Is it true that elephants can't jump? African elephant and calf walking, Masai Mara N.R, Kenya. (Anup Shah/Thinkstock)
Is it true that elephants can't jump?
Lexile

You asked us, is it true that elephants can't jump?

Yes, it's true. Adult elephants just aren't built to jump. Often weighing 16,000 or more pounds, they're too heavy to make the leap. 

Not only do they not jump, elephants never get all four feet off the ground at once - even when charging at full speed. So, technically, I guess, elephants don't actually run, they power walk.

And why should they jump? The great leapers of the animal kingdom often evolved that skill as a way of avoiding predators. But nothing in an elephant's environment, at least in their recent evolutionary past, required them to hop around.

So, despite what you may have heard, believe me when I say, elephants are earthbound.

Filed Under:  
Assigned 511 times
CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why did elephants never need to learn how to hop?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (326)
  • hunterd8-tho
    4/14/2016 - 01:02 a.m.

    Elephants never learned how to hop because they never needed to learn how to. Elephants didn't need to hop to avoid predators. On paragraph four, it states, "But nothing in an elephant's environment, at least in their recent evolutionary past, required them to hop around." So by not having a reason to hop around, elephants never learned how to.

    I thought this was interesting because the article made it sound like many people have been asking that question, but I have never heard anyone say "is it true that elephants can't jump?" I also thought it was interesting how different animals' characteristics change by adapting to the environment around them.

  • rashanp-612-
    4/14/2016 - 08:34 a.m.

    I think they will never learn to jump because they are to heavy. They also do not need to jump because they have their weight that allows them to avoid enemies.

  • jeremiahy-612-
    4/14/2016 - 08:36 a.m.

    They never needed to learn how to jump because they didn't have any preadetors that they needed to get away from by jumping

  • kenleyl-612-
    4/14/2016 - 09:06 a.m.

    Elephants cant hop because nothing in their area or even when they first came to earth recired them to hop

  • flynnm-612-
    4/14/2016 - 09:15 a.m.

    Elephants never needed to learn to walk because there where never that many predators that they would need to run or hide from that would require them to know the skill of jumping to get away from.If there where more predators than they might have over time evolved to gain the skill of jumping but for now they just don't have that skill.

  • hassans-ver
    4/14/2016 - 10:15 a.m.

    I think that jumping is a great source of survival. This might be the reason Elephants are endangered.

  • samantha4-whi
    4/14/2016 - 11:38 a.m.

    I learned that elephants can't jump and that they don't run they power walk.

  • alondra1-whi
    4/14/2016 - 11:38 a.m.

    I think that it is kinda cool that elephants cant jump because most of the animals i know can jump.

  • talas-ver
    4/14/2016 - 11:39 a.m.

    They never needed to because they are heavy and it would be really hard for them to jump.

  • kamaiah-whi
    4/14/2016 - 11:39 a.m.

    if they could jump how high

Take the Quiz Leave a comment
ADVERTISEMENT