An unremarked convergence between equine and elephantine
The 'toelt' demonstrated by Equus caballus photo © Dagur Brynjólfsson
The ‘hyperamble’ – in which the footfall sequence of the normal ambling walk is quickened to the point of just achieving a suspension phase – is unknown in any wild equid, but occurs in both the domestic horse and elephants. In the case of the horse, the hyperamble has been selectively bred for a ride smoother than the trot. In the case of elephants, any running gait would risk fracture on landing, owing to the combination of great mass and relatively inflexible joints.
Robin and the Honey Badger, 22 March 2016