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Life Sciences

Butler University

Proboscidea

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The Locomotor Kinematics Of Asian And African Elephants: Changes With Speed And Size, John R. Hutchinson, Delf Schwerda, Daniel J. Famini, Robert H.I. Dale, Martin S. Fischer, Rodger Kram Oct 2006

The Locomotor Kinematics Of Asian And African Elephants: Changes With Speed And Size, John R. Hutchinson, Delf Schwerda, Daniel J. Famini, Robert H.I. Dale, Martin S. Fischer, Rodger Kram

Scholarship and Professional Work - LAS

For centuries, elephant locomotion has been a contentious and confusing challenge for locomotion scientists to understand, not only because of technical difficulties but also because elephant locomotion is in some ways atypical of more familiar quadrupedal gaits. We analyzed the locomotor kinematics of over 2400 strides from 14 African and 48 Asian elephant individuals (body mass 116-4632 kg) freely moving over ground at a 17-fold range of speeds, from slow walking at 0.40 m s-1 to the fastest reliably recorded speed for elephants, 6.8 m s-1. These data reveal that African and Asian elephants have some subtle …