Differences Between African and Asian Elephants
There are many differences between Asian and African elephants. Both types of elephant are members of the same taxonomical family, elephantidae, but are of a different genus; elephas maximus (Asian elephants, Loxodonta africana (African savanna elephants) and Loxodonta cyclotis (African Forest Elephant).
African elephants have fuller, more rounded heads. The top of the head is a single dome whereas Asian elephants have a twin-domed head with an indent in the middle.
The lower lips of the two species also differ, being long and tapered in Asian elephants and short and round in Africans.
Size of the Ears
It is said that you can tell where an elephant comes from by looking at the size of his ears. African ears are like a map of Africa and Asian ears smaller like the shape of India. African ears are much bigger and reach up and over the neck, which does not occur in Asian elephants.
African elephants’ skin is more wrinkled
In general, African elephants have more ribs than the Asian species, though the number of ribs varies in individual animals. African elephants have up to 21 pairs, Asians up to 20.
All African elephants, male and female, have tusks – whereas only some male Asian elephants have tusks. African tusks are generally bigger. About 50% of female Asian elephants and a small percentage of males have small tusk like teeth known as tushes.