Is the elephant’s trunk the most sensitive part of the body in the animal kingdom?

A new study shows that the elephant’s trunk may be the most sensitive part of the body in the animal kingdom.

German researchers discovered this when they examined the nerves of some deceased zoo elephants. The two nerve branches in the stem where the neurons are located weigh about 50 grams each. This is a group of nerves larger than the normal monkey brain.

The nerve branches are thicker than the elephant’s spine. So there are more connections across the trunk than there are between the elephant’s brain and the rest of the body. The amount of nerve fibers in the proboscis is also three times thicker than that of the animal’s optic nerve and six times the thickness of the auditory nerve branches. It just goes to show how important this part of the elephant’s body is.

It was also previously discovered that the T-Rex has a very sensitive nose. Perhaps the animal clumsily ate a lot less than we always thought and was able to chew on very small bones.

Read more here: The trigeminal ganglion and sensory nerves refer to the tactile specialty of elephants. You can read more about research into sensitive noses for T. rex here: A new digital study finds that the jaws of the T. rex contain sensors that make it an even more fearsome predator.

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Megan Vasquez

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