Not all are long necked in a Tower of Giraffes

Here in the African jungle things are always different. We have George here. George is a giraffe. But not just any giraffe. For as long as George can remember he was different. At first it didn’t matter to George. Giraffes have a long neck, that’s what they are best known for. George on the other hand wasn’t like the others. His head was a lot lower to the ground than his friends. He is one of the rare short necked giraffes. For that matter, he is the only short necked giraffe among all the long necked ones in his family. He is special.

George doesn’t like to be the only one in his tower who hasn’t got a long neck. What was that? A tower? Yes. A group of giraffes are called a tower, or a herd. Your choice. It’s quite appropriate. Tower! As in tall, for all the long necked animals. However, George has no say in this at all. All the others are always laughing at him and make fun of his rather shunted appearance. Quite truthfully it is a funny sight when you first see it.

We count the heads of the giraffes to ensure we have them all. That’s the senior wild life observer in this national park. But when George comes along, he throws it all out the window. Now we have to count the legs and divide in four. Our short necked friend George is devastated when he found out about the news.

We go along and find George has stayed the same all the time. While the others grow long and strong necks, George stays short. He is still strong and healthy. Everyone thinks here that George is falling behind because he can’t reach to the high leaves in the trees. What the others didn’t think of is that George is quite capable to eat the same.

You see, giraffes adapted their changing environment. The trees didn’t want all their leaves eaten away by the animals so they grow taller. When food was scarce, the giraffes who were taller had an advantage. The long neck proved to be the winner. Then George comes along and changes everything. Trees didn’t manage to outgrow these long necks. So while tall trees are still a formidable defence against most leave eating animals, some trees regrouped in the middle ground. That’ is where short animals can’t get to and long necked giraffes have to bend down to eat them.

That’s exactly where George comes into the picture. even though he thinks he misses out in the fine leaves up the top of the trees, he is just as well off in the middle ground.

Now you expect a moral to this story. Don’t you? Something like, you don’t have to have a long neck to be successful? Or, even short ones get a green leave? But none of this is planned here. All I wanted to do is to show you a short necked giraffe among all the long necked ones.

The end


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