Their enormous size is a clear indicator that a fight will result in extreme injuries or even death for the loser. There is no record of the two ever being in a fight. When experiencing musth, bush elephants are known to attack even when unprovoked. The white rhinoceros on the other hand are docile animals that rarely fight except when provoked or when fighting to defend their territories.
African Bush Elephant Facts and Information
- Scientific name is Loxodonta Africana.
- Also referred to as the African savanna elephant.
- Largest extant terrestrial animal.
- Larger than Asian and African forest elephants
- Weighs up to 11 tons.
- Lives for up to 70 years. (I.e. it has the longest lifespan among all extant animals excluding human beings.)
- Fully grown African bush elephant can be as much as 7.3 meters (24 feet) long and 4 meters (13 feet) high.
- Average height for mature male savannah elephants is 3.2m while that of females is 2.6m.
- Average weight for mature male savannah elephants is 6 tons while that of females is 3 tons.
- Herbivorous animals that feed on grass, branches, fruits, leaves and other vegetation.
- Eat more than 200 kilograms (350 pounds) of food daily.
- Can drink almost 200 liters of water per day. Its truck can suck more than 5 liters of water at a time.
- Found in the expansive uninhabited grassland/woodland savanna of eastern and southern African countries including Kenya, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Tanzania, Angola and South Africa.
- Both male and female African Bush Elephants have strong tusks that can lift up to 180 kilograms (400 pounds.)
- Use the trunk to drink water or blow the water on to their backs for cooling purposes.
- Whereas female elephants live in groups of mothers and calves, male ones live a solitary lifestyle and only search for females during mating season.
- Savanna elephants are social animals that live in groups with 10 – 1000 members.
- Have a gestation period of 22 months. This makes them extant mammals with the longest gestation period.
- Mostly gives birth to only one calf but in extremely rare occasions can give birth to twins.
- Gives birth once every five years.
- A new born calf weighs about 100kgs and is slightly less than 1 meter tall.
- Reproduction age is between 10 and 11 years but they are most fertile when 25 to 45 years old.
- Conservationist estimate that more than 25,000 African Savanna elephants are killed annually.
- Characterized by their enormous, outward-pointed tasks.
- Physical features are almost similar but slightly different from that of the African forest elephant.
- The African forest elephant has round ears and its tusks are straighter compared to the bush elephant.
- Impossible to identify the sex of an African bush elephant through its physical characteristics. Scientists and conservationists rely on their behavioral characteristics in order to identify the sex.
- Females are smaller than males.
- Normally have four teeth with each tooth weighing up to 5kgs (11 pounds) and measuring about 30cm (12in)
- During their lifetime they replace their teeth six times.
- Significant number of African elephants die of starvation. This happens when they lose teeth and therefore are no longer able to forage.
- Each task can grow to a total length of 2.5 meters and weigh up to 45kgs (100 pounds.)
- Very intelligent animals. They can memorize exact routes for hundreds of kilometers and exact locations of water bodies.
- Very emotional animals. They mourn their dead and show affection and love to other bush elephants.
- Have no natural predators. Their only threat to existence is poaching and other human activity.
- Their population has significantly dwindled from more than 5 million elephants at the beginning of the 20th century to less than 300, 000 at the beginning of the 21st
White Rhinoceros Facts and Information
- Scientific name is Ceratotherium simum.
- Also referred to as the square-lipped rhinoceros.
- There are two distinct extant species of the white rhino including the northern rhino and the southern rhino.
- The population of the southern white rhinos is about 20, 000 while there are only 2 northern white rhinos currently in existence. The 2 Northern white rhinos are only found at Ol Pajeta Conservancy in Kenya.
- White and black rhinos have the same color (greyish) even though their names suggest otherwise. The name ‘white’ comes from the Afrikaans word ‘weit’ referring to the rhino’s mouth.
- White rhinos are bigger than black ones.
- White rhino body hair is limited to eyelashes, tail tips and ears.
- Second largest extant mammal after elephants.
- Can grow to a height of between 1.5 and 1.8 meters.
- Males are larger than females.
- Mature male can weigh as much as 2,500 kg while females can weigh up to 2,000 kg.
- Newborn calves weigh between 40 and 60 kg.
- Gestation period is about 16 months.
- Have two horns with the anterior (front) one being larger. The anterior horn can grow to a length of 2 meters.
- Takes 7 years for female white rhinos to reach reproduction age while male ones take up to 12 years.
- A calf is normally taken care of by her mother until the age of about 3 when the mother gives birth to another calf.
- Are territorial animals. Males live a solitary life in a territory that is up to 3 square kilometers while female ones may live in groups of up to 14 individuals.
- Males mark their territories by scrapping and piling dung at the edges of the territory.
- Herbivorous animals that mostly feed on grass.
- For short distances they can run at a top speed of 40km/h.
- Their eyesight is poor but they have remarkable smelling and hearing abilities.
- Lifespan is about 50 years.
- Mostly found in the African grassland savannah with more than 98% of them located in Kenya, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
- Poaching is the biggest threat to their survival.
African Bush Elephant vs White Rhinoceros Comparison Table
|Animals|| Asian Elephant|| African Elephant|
|Species||C. simum||L. africana|
|Average Body Length||12.1 to 13.1 ft||16.4 – 24.6 ft|
|Max Tail Length||28 in||2.3 – 4 ft|
|Shoulder height||5.58 to 6.10 ft||10.8 on average|
|Average Weight||5,100 lb||12,130 lb|
|Area||Southern Africa||Eastern, southern and western Africa|
|Skin Color||Yellowish brown to slate grey||Grey/Brown with smoother|
|Average Life Span||40 – 50 years||60-70 years|
The duel between the African Bush Elephant and White Rhinoceros
The African bush elephant is likely to win a fight between the two. Savannah elephants are almost three times bigger than white rhinos and have bigger and stronger tusks. Their massive size will definitely work to their advantage. When foraging, African elephants occasionally knock down big trees and easily uproot giant trees.
A battle between the elephant and rhino will not only be influenced by their size but also stamina, intelligence and ability to dodge the attacker. The African elephant has a competitive advantage when all these factors are considered. It is more intelligent, stronger and can easily crash the rhino. One advantage that the rhino has is its ability to maneuver and dodge attackers. The white rhino may also use its high speeds to try and knock down the African bush elephant.
All in all, a battle between these two African mammals won’t be an easy one. Even the winner will most likely sustain life-threatening injuries.
Videos of African Bush Elephant and White Rhinoceros
Compare Asian Elephant vs African Elephant