Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Elephant Mother & Child

Was very busy lately planning/organising a tour for a couple visiting our country for the first time, but I didn't forget my promise to post some elephant-mother-&-child-photos. During the last tour in the Kruger National Park, we "happened upon" this scene of the females in an elephant herd "hiding" a few very young offspring in a thicket.

Eventually the herd crossed the road ahead of us (sitting in open safari vehicles), & "last in line" was this female elephant with her newborn baby as well as her "attendants" (= other female elephants specifically around to assist the mother in protecting her vulnerable young offspring).

By now people all over the world must have heard/know how amazingly protective & caring female elephants are with regard to their young - other than also towards each member within the herd. Yet even knowing this doesn't dampen a feeling of deep admiration every time one is privileged to "witness" such devotion.

This is one of the very first photos I snapped with a small digital camera (instead of a camera-with-film) - of an elephant female with her youngster only moments after it was born!! - accompanied by another elephant baby probably only a day (or 2) old.

Another photo of a female elephant crossing the road with her tiny youngster "in tow" - luckily for all visitors a quite regular occurance when driving through most of our game reserves.

An elephant mother's trunk gently guiding her youngster towards safety instead of possibly getting into trouble, because this inquisitive, tiny young elephant isn't able yet to distinguish if what it has detected might endanger its existence.

Another example how an elephant female uses her trunk to "guide" her youngster - in this case towards tasty acacia leaves.

The song: "lean on me" - or is that: lean against me? - comes to mind. These 2 elephants were crossing the road after a refreshing mud-bath in a river nearby.

Last but not least today: another photo of mother-elephant & her tiny newborn, of which I posted a series of photos before (= An Elephant Story) on Tuesday, 25 October 2011.

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