Paul Bunyan’s Origin Story

Welcome back! For my first mythology story, I though I would take a piece of folklore from the United States. I decided to do one of the most famous stories from the country, Paul Bunyan. Since there is so much to his story, I will be breaking it up some. Time to get started!

According to legend, when Paul was born, It took 5 storks, working overtime, to deliver him to his parents to the town of Bangor on the coast of Maine. He grew so fast that he needed to wear his father’s clothes after one week. Paul’s cry could also empty a whole pond. He grew at a rapid rate, with him soon needing to use a wagon as a baby carriage, and then a giant raft in the ocean tied to the coast after he flattened four square miles of forest. As he was rocking in his sleep, Paul was rocking so much that he was causing tidal waves on both sides of the Atlantic. It got so bad that they needed to call in the British Navy to wake him up! The town also needed to put together fourty bowls of porridge to feed him.

After the incident with the British Navy, Paul’s parents realised that Maine was just too small for him, and picked up and moved the family to wide open Minnesota. When Paul was one, his father got him a pet blue ox named Babe. As he grew up, Paul would play with a axe and crosscut saw like other kids would play with toys. It’s said that he grew so big that you could fit 7 axe handles and a plug of tobacco between his eyes. As he was playing with Babe, Paul and his Ox created Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes.
Next time in Paul’s story, I’ll get into his adventures in forming his lumberjack crew.

For more information on Bunyan’s origin and other Bunyan stories, check this out – Myths and Legends Podcast: EP. 66- Paul Bunyan: Truth in Advertising

In 2 weeks, I’ll be doing an obscure landmark from somewhere in the world!

Photo credits – Paul Bunyan TrailDuluth Trading

Elephants

Welcome to my first full post! I figured I should start with something close to me, and so I decided to do the elephant, which is my favorite animal. I figure that I will start with photos of the species, then move to the taxonomy, and then the stats of the species and finish with fun facts. Well, here we go!

Elephants

To start with, there are three main species of elephants:

African Bush Elephant- Loxodonta Africana (ABE)

Asian Elephant- Elephas Maximus (AE)

African Forest Elephant- Loxodonta Cyclotis (AFE)

Classification: 

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Superorder: Afrotheria
Order: Proboscidea
Family: Elephantine
Genus #1: Loxodonta
Species: Loxodonta Cyclotis
Species: Loxodonta Africana
Genus #2: Elephas
Species: Elephas Maximus

Infant Asian Elephant

Species Overview:

Weight: 6,000-12,000 Lbs (AE), 4,000-10,000 Lbs (AFE), 6,600-13,000 (ABE)
Height: 7.3-8.9 Ft Tall (AE), 7.3-8.9 Ft Tall (AFE), 9.2-11 Ft Tall (ABE)
Diet: Grasses, small plants, bushes, fruits, twigs, roots, and tree bark
Range: India & Southeast Asia (AE), Central African Mountains (AFE), East African Grasslands (ABE)
Habitat: Southeast Asian Rainforests (AE), Central African Rainforests (AFE), African Savannah (ABE)
Life Span: 5060 Years (AE), 60-70 Years (AFE), 60-70 Years (ABE)
Number of Young: 1 for all species
Conservation Status: Endangered (AE), Vulnerable (AFE), Vulnerable (ABE)

Fun Facts:

  1. The elephant trunk has more than 40,000 muscles in it.
  2. Elephants have greeting ceremonies when a friend that has been away for some time returns to the group.
  3. Elephants pay homage to the bones of their dead, gently touching the skulls and tusks with their trunks and feet. when an elephant walks past a place that a loved one has died, he/she will stop dead still; a silent and empty pause that can last several minutes.
  4.  Elephants can swim – they use their trunk to breathe like a snorkel in deep water.
  5. Elephants prefer one tusk over the other, just as people are either left or right-handed.
  6. Elephants have four molars, one on the top and one on the bottom on both sides of the mouth. One molar can weigh about five pounds and is the size of a brick!
  7. The largest elephant on record was an adult male African elephant. It weighed about 24,000 pounds and was 13 feet tall at the shoulder!
  8. An elephant’s skin is an inch thick.
  9. Elephants have a highly developed brain and the largest of all the land mammals. The brain is 3 or 4 times larger than that of humans although smaller as a proportion of body weight.
  10. The average weight for an elephant heart is about 27 to 46 pounds!
  11. Elephant feet are covered in a soft padding that help uphold their weight, prevent them from slipping, and dull any sound. Therefore elephants can walk almost silently!
  12. Elephants have the longest pregnancy of all the animals. It takes a female 22 months from conception to give birth.
  13. Elephants are social creatures. They sometimes “hug” by wrapping their trunks together in displays of greeting and affection.
  14. An elephant is capable of hearing sound waves well below our human hearing limitation. The far reaching use of high pressure infrasound opens the elephant’s spatial experience far beyond our limited capabilities.
  15. Elephants are highly sensitive and caring animals. If a baby elephant complains, the entire family will rumble and go over to touch and caress it. Elephants express grief, compassion, self-awareness, altruism and play.
  16. Elephants have large, thin ears. Their ears are made up of a complex network of blood vessels which regulate an elephant’s temperature. Blood is circulated through their ears to cool them down in hot climates.
  17. Elephants use their feet to listen, they can pick up sub-sonic rumblings made by other elephants, through vibrations in the ground. Elephants are observed listening by putting trunks on the ground and carefully positioning their feet.
  18. Elephants cry, play, have incredible memories, and laugh.
  19. The elephant’s trunk is able to sense the size, shape and temperature of an object. An elephant uses its trunk to lift food and suck up water then pour it into its mouth.
  20. Elephants waive their trunks up in the air and from side to side to smell better.

Next time I’ll tell a story from mythology. See you soon!

          Photo credits – Defenders of WildlifeDreamicusNational ZooMakeWealthHistoryNational Geograhic


          Hello World!

           

          Hello World! Welcome to my blog. Here you will find an inside look into my mind, with everything I am interested in, from animals and history, to pop culture and science. See you all soon!
          Photo credit – News4Youth

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