Saturday, October 13, 2012

Giraffes and the Jugular Vein

The jugular vein that runs the length of the giraffe's neck is an extremely important part of them being able to drink water. This vein has a number of valves that reduce the amount of backflow of blood from the giraffe's head.

This is important because if this vein did not have the valves, the giraffes would blackout each time that they took a drink. If you stand on your head or hang upside-down too long, you can begin to feel the blood that rushes into your head. This is kind of the same thing that happens to giraffes, only it has a major effect on these animals.

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