Elephants are excellent swimmers
It may not come as a surprise that elephants enjoy playing in the water. They are famous for splashing playfully and showering themselves and others with sprays from their trunks. But it might be a surprise to learn that these huge animals are also quite good at swimming.
Elephants have enough buoyancy to stay at the surface and use their powerful legs to paddle. They use their trunks as a snorkel when crossing deep water and so are able to breath normally even when submerged. Thanks to their strong legs and built-in snorkel, elephants have been known to travel long distances in this manner.
Swimming is a necessary skill for crossing rivers and lakes when traveling to find food. Some experts also speculate that these swimming skills are what allowed Asian elephants to get from southeast India to Sri Lanka.
There's even a theory that the Loch Ness Monster was actually an elephant from a traveling circus. Paleontologist and painter Neil Clark noticed that the famous photograph from 1934 looks suspiciously like the top of an elephant's head with the trunk extended up out of the water. "The reason why we see elephants in Loch Ness is that circuses used to go along the road to Inverness and have a little rest at the side of the loch and allow the animals to go and have a little swim around," Clark told CBS News. (But don't worry, all you Nessy believers; the theory hasn't been proven.)