Every now and then I like to post wildlife stories from this beautiful continent of ours as opposed to the many biker "wild-life" stories that I usually post! This is a lovely story out of Zambia in an area called the "Kapani Lagoon" which like many areas in Central Africa is suffering with a particularly harsh dry spell. I received this story via email so I will quote;
Most conservationists believe that man should not meddle with the natural order and that nature should be allowed to run its course, no matter how grim or cruel. However every rule has an exception and when members of the South Luangwa Conservation Society, attracted by their screams, came across a baby elephant trapped in the rapidly drying mud of the Kapani Lagoon, along with its mother who had tried to save it, they knew that they could not stand by and with the assistance of the Wildlife Authority, they attempted a difficult and dangerous rescue.
The frantic herd members were desparately trying to help the baby and its mother who were screaming in terror. The baby had become stuck first and the mother tried to help and became stuck herself.
They had no hope at all of getting free and the mud was rapidly drying.
Carefully avoiding the mother's flailing trunk the team managed to get a rope around the baby elephant.
With the whole team pulling they begin to drag the baby out of the cloying mud.
Slowly and painstakingly, being careful not to injure the baby, they manage to drag it from the mud.
But it wont leave its mother's side and struggles back into the mud!
Again the team manages to pull the young elephant out of the mud.
But again, and in spite of members shouting and waving their arms, the baby again returns to its mother's side.
This time they drag it further away from the mud hole hoping that it will run away.
Luckily a call from a cousin in the herd convinces the baby elephant to join them, now the team can turn their attention to the mother.
With much difficulty they manage to get a rope around the huge, rapidly tiring beast.
Using a tractor they slowly begin to pull, not knowing if they were going to be able to get her out.
She seems to sense that she is almost free, with the team shouting encouragement "Come on Mama, come on, you can do it!" she struggles to free herself.
Almost there, she was obviously exhausted but could sense freedom.
Success! Weak and wobbly she hurried off to join the herd and her baby.
The happy team members drink to their success on the Kapani deck after a very long, exhausting but extremely rewarding day. Congratulations on a job well done, they could not have left those Elephants to their fate.
After that beautiful story I will leave you with a picture showing how Elephants scratch their nuts;
Use a hired car when you visit game reserves!