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Elephant Using Trunk to Drink

Elephant Using Trunk to Drink, Mkhuze Game Reserve Caption: Elephant using its trunk to funnel water into its mouth, Mkhuze Game Reserve, KZN, South Africa. © Scotch Macaskill

Camera: Canon EOS 350D digital; Lens: Canon EF 80-200mm F/2.8L; Focal length 80mm; Aperture F/4.5; Shutter-speed 1/320; ISO: 400.

An elephant's trunk is essentially a modified nose comprising muscle and no bone. When the trunk is used for drinking, as in the photo above, the elephant sucks water into the trunk and then squirts the contents into its mouth. In adults, the trunk when used like this can hold about 10 to 12 liters.

Elephants can't drink directly through their trunks as this would be like sucking water through the nose, which would cause them to drown.

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