Can elephants swim and dive?
Like all mammals (except humans and apes, who have to learn how to swim), elephants are very good, untiring swimmers.
Elephants move all four legs to swim and are able to move quite fast like that. Their big body provides enough floatation while the trunk acts like a snorkel.
Do Elephants like to swim?
Particularly young elephants love swimming and diving. They “fight” the waves in wild abandon, climb about on the older group members and splash back into the water. They are also untiring divers. When watching the animals in the water, the elephant keepers are always relieved to spot the small elephant’s trunk peeping out of the water again to take another breath.
Can Elephants swim long distances?
Elephants are indeed bulky, but deceivingly so. We must remember that elephants can walk up to eighty miles a day or more in search of food and water. That means that their legs, that have to carry the weight of the body, are very muscular and strong. This, coupled with their ability to use their trunk as a snorkel allows them to swim for hours on end. They can also splay the soles of their feet to help propel their huge bulk when in water.
Elephants do not tire easily when swimming, but if they do, they will just rest in the water for some time. Because of their buoyancy they do not drown. Elephants in Africa have been recorded to have travelled a distance of 48 kilometers across water, as also swimming for six hours continuously. Experts believe that the elephants that live in Sri Lanka are the progeny of elephants that swam across from Southern India across the sea. What appears as the only constraint that would make an elephant seek land when swimming is hunger and thirst when in sea water.
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