Brand van Sittert

Brand van Sittert

Brand van Sittert


Affiliate in the Centre for Veterinary Wildlife Studies

Research Sub-theme

Understanding body growth, form and function in giraffes and extinct giraffids.

The giraffe has an extreme body shape. How the giraffe skeleton grows into and supports this body shape is, however, not yet fully understood. More research is therefore needed to describe the growth, micro- and macrostructure and biomechanics of the giraffe skeleton. The knowledge gained from these studies has the potential to elucidate body form in extinct giraffids as well as other large mammals.

Research Projects

  • Skeletal microstructure of the extant giraffe, Giraffa camelopardalis, and the extinct giraffids, Sivatherium hendeyi and G. jumae.
  • Skeletal mass in giraffes throughout ontogeny.

Research Opportunities

  • Expanding the study to compare the allometry of the giraffe skeletal system with those of other larger wildlife species.
  • Describing the strength of giraffe long bones in terms of cross sectional areas and second moment of inertia.
  • Description of the size and shape of extinct giraffids.
Published by Linda Poggenpoel

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