Current taxonomy (as of September 2016)
Giraffids once very widespread and diverse
Closest living relative
Closest relatives to the Giraffidae
Cultivating Public Awareness and Appreciation
History (Mitchell 2009)
Order: *Artiodactyla (even-toed hoofed animals; includes pigs, sheep goats, cattle, deer)
Describer (Date): Linnaeus (1758)
*Note: New anatomical and DNA evidence on the relationship between Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulates) and Cetacea (whales and dolphins) recently led to a merging of the two orders into a new group, Cetartiodactyla (Montgelard, 1997; reviewed in Kulemzina, 2009). As of October 2012, experts had not agreed on whether to define Cetartiodactyla as an official taxonomic order that would replace Artiodactyla and Cetacea. Some continue to list giraffes in the order Artiodactyla (Franklin, 2011) or use the term Cetartiodactyla without defining it as an order (IUCN, 2008).
Giraffe rock art at Dabous, Republic of Niger. 7-10,000 BC.
Carving of a 19-foot tall male with smaller female (partially in view), behind.
Image credit: © David Coulson/Trust for African Rock Art. All rights reserved. Used with permission from TARA.
Brown et al. (2007)
Bercovitch and Deacon (2015)
Bradshaw Foundation (website)
Colbert and Morales (1990)
Dagg and Foster (1976)
Fennessy et al. (2013)
Hassanin et al. (2007)
IUCN SSC GOSG (2016)
Kingdon (1979, 1997)
Lacky and LaRue (1997)
Trust for African Rock Art (website)