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Head, Ears, and Nose
Endangered, Vulnerable, and Threatened Species
Elephants

How big are an elephant's ears?


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Answered 2011-01-03 19:48:58

African elephant's ears are 42 in. (107 cm) in diameter. Indian elephants have smaller ears.

They keep the elephant cool. Elephants' ears are thin-skinned and rich in blood vessels. The ears of some African elephants are nearly 2 meters long and almost as wide, much bigger than those of Indian elephants. When an African elephant waves its ear flaps, it can lower the temperature of the blood flowing within them by as much as 5 degrees Celcius. Indian elephants are essentially creatures of shady forests. They don't have to endure the high temperatures that African elephants encounter on their sunburnt grasslands, so they do not need such large ears.

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