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Sub-Saharan Giraffes Are Dying At An Alarming Rate

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NAT GEOWhen Arthur Muneza was about to start his master’s at Michigan State University in 2014, he faced a pivotal question: What did he want to study?

He considered many rock stars of the African animal kingdom: elephants, lions, even hyenas.

But then the biologist heard that few were studying the little-understood giraffe skin disease, and he knew he was onto something.

“We said, let’s just go for it. Let’s look at giraffe skin disease and see what we can get out of it,” he says.

The mysterious condition, which is widespread in sub-Saharan Africa, causes grayish, crusty lesions on giraffe necks and legs. It’s unknown what, if any, environmental factors are to blame, or even if it’s a compilation of several diseases that attack the skin of the world’s tallest mammals.

This is another bad one guys. Giraffes are a staple of African wildlife lore and frankly they’re cool as hell. I’m not gonna sit here and tell you what makes giraffes cool, but if you asked me to I’d mention their necks and weird tongues.

Anywho, apparently there’s this Giraffe Skin Disease going around the giraffe circuit that gives these long necked sickos bloody and puss filled lesions and then they just die or get eaten because they can’t run anymore or defend themselves. It sounds absolutely awful and I feel for these guys. I really do. Some of the pictures of these giraffes with huge grey bloody lesions on their knees are pretty dang brutal. I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy.

The worst part about this? Scientists are stumped as to what’s causing this disease and what they can do to end it or at least protect the giraffes from it. I don’t know enough about anything really to truly explain this to you, but I’m sure it’s bad news for the sub-Saharan giraffe population. It’s gotta be curtains for those guys.

Honestly, now that I’m thinking about it, I’m pretty sure this is just natural selection. Some giraffes get this stupid fucking disease and then they can’t run away from lions so they get eaten, thus those giraffes don’t get to reproduce. Eventually, this shit will take care of itself. I’m not worried anymore, I literally just talked myself out of it. Thank you for your time.

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