Elephant Calf In Trouble Rescued By Herd
The African elephant may well be the largest land mammals on Earth but for their babies who haven’t yet reached adulthood and their maximum weight, a riverbank that is steep or a slippery watering hole may pose a significant challenge. Fortunately for the little critters a helping trunk is always on hand. Timothy Van Vuuren managed to shoot some spectacular footage of a herd of elephants acting as a single unit.
Late afternoon drink
Mr Van Vuuren is an ex-game ranger and was on safari in South Africa’s MalaMala Game Reserve. He came across a herd who had stopped to enjoy a bit of a drink during the late afternoon and watched them as they began to make their way back to the bush passing a steep embankment. Mr Van Vuuren anticipated the young calf would have problems scaling the bank so began filming the herd hoping he would be able to capture how the herd responded to the youngster who would have a hard time.
No one left behind
He says the calf was not left behind to manage the struggle on its own and the entire family joined in the rescue bid. It took them a few minutes and everyone lent their helping trunks to hoist the calf over the steepest part of the climb. The task was not helped by a panicked calf that had choosen the steepest part of the embankment to climb. Mr Van Vuuren says his group were thrilled to see they helped the little critter up and over the embankment.
Complex social connections
Elephant herds consist to complex family bonds and social connections that are critical for their survival. This particular sighting ended with the herd coming together and heading back into the bush so they could finish their feeding. The little calf who struggled wisely chose to stay close to his mother after his harrowing ordeal.