The digestive system is very simple so not much digestion takes place in the stomach. Because elephants only digest 40 % of what they eat, nutrients are not good absorbed. This inefficient digestive system means that elephants must eat large quantities of food to retain and absorb necessary nutrients for good health.
Trunk is a fusion of the nose and upper lip. Trunk is sensitive enough to pick up a single blade of grass. Asian elephants have a single finger on the upper lip of their trunk.
The trunk is used to eat and drink.
Tusks are used for a lot of purposes: to dig for water, salt, and roots, to debark trees and to move trees and branches when clearing a path. In addition, tusks are used for marking trees to establish territory.
In the Asian species, only the males have large external tusks.
Elephants’ teeth are very different. They have 4 molar teeth. In addition males have 2 incisors: the tusks.
Elephants have cycles of tooth rotation throughout their entire life. The molars are replaced 6 times in average. The teeth have horizontal progression. New teeth grow in at the back of the mouth, pushing older teeth toward the front. Often old elephants are dying because their last set of teeth is not replaced; as a consequence, they are dying of starvation.
Skin measures about 2.5 centimeters thick. However, the skin around the mouth and inside of the ear is paper thin.
The mud acts as a sunscreen, protecting their skin from ultraviolet radiations; this also aids the skin in regulating body temperatures.
They are very important for temperature regulation.
Elephants move their ears constantly in order to cool the surface blood vessels, and then the cooler blood gets circulated to the rest of the body.
Elephants have very small eyes in comparison with their large size but they have a well developed vision.