Sometimes we have to marvel at the way nature is designed. The world is bursting with animals of all different shapes and sizes, evolving daily and with unique skillsets used to survive through hunting, feasting, procreating and evading predators. Some animals far exceed the height of humans, seeing the world from heights that we never will.
In the animal world, height and mass can be used to intimidate, or in cases such as the giraffe, they are tall enough to eat fresh leaves hung high from tall trees, while also being blessed with stomachs that have 4 compartments to digests the leaves they eat! Whatever the reason for their height, their large size is something to marvel at.
This list is based on some of the tallest animals currently living on this planet, while standing on all of their legs.
The giraffe is currently the tallest animal in the World. They typically fall between the ranges of 4.2-5.5m or 14-18 feet tall with females growing to around 14 feet and their male counterparts 18 feet tall.
The tallest living giraffe is named Forest, residing in Australia and as of 2021 stands at 5.7m or (18'8") They tend to live 10-15 years in the wild and 20-25 in captivity.
2: African Elephant
The heaviest land animal also stands as one of the tallest, with males standing at an average of 3.3 meters (10'8") and females at 2.6 meters (8'5") at shoulder height.
The tallest ever elephant stood around 1 meter higher than the average male African elephant, with a shoulder height of 4 meters (13'1"), and weighing 11,000 kg!
3: Common Ostrich
The world's tallest bird also has one of the longest necks (the Great Egret holds the record for the longest neck), but with the ostrich, almost half its height is in the neck!
Males can grow around It can grow up to 2.8m (9'2") tall and females 2m or (6'7") tall.
They can live anywhere between 40–45 years it also holds the record for the world's largest egg, at 6 inches (5.8cm) in length!
4: The Gaur
Also known as the Indian bison, the guar can reach between 1.65-2.2m or (5'4"-7'2") in height at the shoulder. Females are significantly shorter than their male counterparts.
They are very powerful and agile, being able to jump high obstacles in their way, and respected in the animal kingdom having few predators capable of taking them down!
5: Dromedary Camel
The tallest of the camel species. This mighty animal is built to last! They have 1 hump storing a plentiful amount of fat that breaks down to water and energy when other resources aren't available.
At the shoulder males fall between 1.8-2m (5'11" - 6'6") and females range between 1.67-1.88m (5'6"-6'2"). Their average lifespan is around 40-45 years!
6: Alaskan Moose
This subspecies of moose can grow anywhere from 1.4–2.1m (4'6"- 6'9") at the shoulder with an average of around 1.83m (6").
However, the tallest ever moose on record stood at a whopping 2.3 meters (7'8") tall, and with a lifespan of 15-25 years.
There is also a HUGE statue of a moose (largest on earth) named Mac, located in Storelgen, Norway, standing at 10.36 meters or 34 feet!
These cuties can stand between 1.7m to 1.8m (5'7"-11") with females being a little smaller in height.
They have an average lifespan of around 20 years. They can be quite challenging as pets, being stubborn, but they also revel in attention!
One llama called Caspa set a record for jumping over a hurdle of an incredible 1.13m (3'8.5") and without even scraping the bar!
8: White Rhinoceros
The white rhino is the second-largest and animal (not tallest) after the African Elephant, and their height at the shoulders for males is 1.7-8 meters or (5'7-5'11") and for females 1.6-1.78m (5.3"-5'10").
They have really long bodies with huge mass and are known to charge up to 30 miles per hour (move out of the way fast!)
9: Shire Horse
With black, bay, or grey coats, a long mane, and giant hooves, this mythic-looking horse stands at an average of withers of grown stallions is about 178m (5'10") with a minimum of 1.73m (5'8") tall.
On a side note - out of all living horses, the tallest horse currently alive is called Zeus, measuring 2.2 meters or 7'2"! Horses have a healthy life expectancy of 20-30 years
One of the largest mammals on Earth, although not the tallest, males can grow to around 1.6m (5'2") tall at the shoulder, with females slightly smaller.
Surprisingly, hippo's cannot swim, and are not as big on eating as you may think!
They can live until 40 years in the wild, and if in captivity up to 50 years - the longest life expectancy on this list!
11: Blue Wildebeest
These dominant looking animals earned their name by their coat having a soft blue shine. Males and females can grow to around or 1.5m or (5") tall at the shoulder.
They have an average lifespan of 20 years and defend themselves from predators by living in groups and also running very fast when needed - up to 50 mph!
12: Polar Bear
Classified as marine mammals, the polar bear is the largest bear species and males tend to be 1.1-1.6m or (3'7”-5'3”) at the shoulder, and females between .81-1.19 m (2'8”-3'11”).
These bears can swim constantly for hours at a time, which may be needed as they spend around half their life hunting and only 2% of their hunts are successful! They have a life expectancy of 30 years
13: Grevy's Zebra
With stripes that can dazzle predators, they sure need them, as these zebras are a highly endangered species.
They are also the tallest of the 3 zebra breeds, standing at about 1.2–1.52m (4"-5") at the shoulder (male+female).
They have a lifespan of 25 years in the wild, but in captivity, they can live between 25 and 30 years.
Male donkeys (Jacks) and females (Jennies) both measure on average 1.1-1.45m (3'6"-4'75") at the withers.
The world's tallest donkey is named Romulus who is an American Mammoth Jackstock breed, measuring 1.73m (5'8") from hooves to withers.
His brother is just 2 inches shorter, so tall genetics is for sure the winner here! They live on average 25-30 years.
15: Amur Tigers (Siberian Tiger)
With their population declining 95% over the last 100 years, there are fewer than 4,000 of these tigers alive today they are a marvel to enjoy while they are here!
They have a shoulder height of around 0.76-1m (2'5"-3.5"), and while not the tallest animal in the world, they are one of the most ferocious predators! They typically live around 10-15 years in the wild and 20+ in captivity.
The Tallest and Largest Ever Land Animals on Earth
The Sauroposeidon Proteles is the tallest land animal to date (2021) to ever walk on the earth. This Dinosaur lived in the early Cretaceous period and grow up to a height of 60 feet (18.2 meters)!
The Largest overall land animal to exist on earth was a Dinosaur in the Late Cretaceous period and was called the Patagotitan Mayorum. This specimen was discovered in 2017, and when roaming the earth stood at a height of 46 feet or 14 meters! This beast weighed also as much as 12 elephants or a Boeing 737!
The Top 3 Shortest Animals in Length on Earth
1: The smallest animal currently residing on earth, the bumblebee bat is worthy of its name, as it is around the size of a large bumblebee. It measures at around 29 to 33 mm (1.1 to 1.3 in) in length, and weighs in at just 2grams!
2: Second place goes to the Etruscan Pygmy Shrew, which has a body length of 36–53 mm 1.4–2 in, weighing just (1.2–2.5 grams).
3: The Pygmy Jerboa adult average only 4.4 cm (1.7 in) in head and body length. Their tails are significantly longer, growing up to 3 inches in length.
The Longest Animal Currently on Earth
The Antarctic blue whale is the longest animal to be alive on the earth but also the largest ever (including dinosaurs). It weighs around 400,000 pounds and can reach up to around 30.48 meters (100 feet) in length.
This animal is so huge that it has a heart similar to the size of a small car and also has one of the loudest voices, with its tongue weighing similar to an elephant!
The Biggest Animal Ever Found Dead
The biggest animals currently on earth are Whales, and in 2021 one of the biggest that has ever been found dead was discovered off the coast of Italy, where the body of a finback whale (Balaenoptera physalus) measured 20 meters or (65 feet) in length and weighed almost 80 tons!
If we include dinosaurs, then the biggest remains ever found belonged to Argentinosaurus and are estimated to have been over 36 meters (118) in length and around 100 tons in weight!