3 Things You Should Know About Giraffes’ Unique Sleeping Habits

Photo by Triston Dunn on Unsplash

From their super-long necks to their spotted coat patterns, there are many things that set giraffes apart from all the other animal species. Their sleeping habits happen to be just as unique as their appearance, and here are three things you should know about their fascinating sleep behaviors.

Short Intervals

Unlike humans, who need around 8 hours of sleep to rest properly, giraffes usually require almost twice less. They sleep for about 4.6 hours per day, mostly at night, often taking short naps throughout the day instead of sleeping for long periods in order to stay vigilant and avoid being caught off guard in the wild.

Standing Up or Lying Down?

Giraffes are capable of sleeping lying down, but they must bend their neck backward and rest their head on the hip or thigh to feel comfortable and avoid putting strain on their long necks. It’s not uncommon for them to sleep standing up, in order to stay vigilant and avoid the constant threat of predators.

REM Sleep

Studies have shown that giraffes are capable of REM sleep aka rapid eye movement sleep. It’s a deep sleep stage characterized by random rapid movement of the eyes, but they don’t tend to stay in this sleep phase for prolonged periods of time.