Skip to main content - The Animal Encyclopedia for Kids


Animals With an Amazing Sense of Hearing

Here, you find exciting information about animal ears and their sense of hearing!

Animals often have an incredibly good hearing, but not all of them use their ears to hear. There are even animals that don’t have ears but can still hear.


African Elephant

Category: Air conditioning


The African elephant has the biggest ears. But why? Maybe so their trunks don’t look as big? Just kidding! But they must use them to hear, right? Not quite. Their ears are like giant fans. When the sun burns its skulls and the air starts to shimmer in the heat, the elephant pumps blood into its ears. It then flaps them around and the cooled blood flows back into its body. It’s like holding your wrist under cold water. African forest elephants and Asian elephants have considerably smaller ears, as they live under tropical forest canopies.

African Elephant African Elephant - Photo: JONATHAN PLEDGER/Shutterstock


Fennec Fox

Category: Super ears and air conditioning unit

The fennec fox is a desert fox. It might only be 15.7 inch (40 cm) tall, but its ears are 15 cm long! They can hear almost anything, even a beetle crawling over the sand. The fennec also uses its ears like the elephant does - to cool down.


Fennec Fox Fennec Fox - Photo: Cat Downie/Shutterstock



Category: Super ears

The brown long-eared bat has the biggest ears in comparison to its body size. The bat bat hears tones that people can’t hear at all. The animal only grows to 1.9 inch (5 cm) in length but has 1.5 inch (4 cm) long ears. This would be like a human having 55.1 inch (140 cm) long ears. Maybe Little Red Riding Hood saw a bat when she said “What big ears you have!”.



Category: 3D ears

Owls have unusual hearing equipment. You can hardly see them, but the barn owl has one ear that’s higher than the other. On purpose! Active at night, these silent flying owls can pretty much hear in 3D. One ear hears upwards, the other downwards.

Barn Owl Barn Owl - Photo: Mark Medcalf/Shutterstock


Pupils are welcome to use this information at school for animal profiles, fact sheets, essays, work sheets, presentations, posters or homework. All information appearing on this site has been precisely and thoroughly researched, nevertheless should you notice any errors, please do notify us via email.

See all topics on