Elephant calf helped up embankment

Posted by Elise Kirsten on 7 October 2019

Former MalaMala game ranger 28-Year-old Timothy van Vuuren captured a touching video of elephants helping a little calf up a ridge at MalaMala after it started to panic because it couldn’t follow the herd.

‘The scene was quite peaceful and there was a large herd of elephants coming down to the Sand River for a late afternoon drink and play before heading up in the direction of the bush over an embankment. I remember looking at that high step onto the embankment and saw how small the little calf in the herd was and knew that he would struggle to get up there. That’s when I decided to start filming,’ he told Latest Sightings.

‘I felt so sorry for the little one as it started to panic, but elephants being elephants, very family orientated, the calf was not left to struggle for too long before his family came to the rescue. My guests and I were all equally blown away by the amazing family dynamic portrayed by these elephants as they stepped in to help the calf! Our emotions of remorse did not last long before it turned into absolute relief. We were ecstatic when they helped the little one up and over the embankment,’ said van Vuuren.

‘The sighting ended with the herd gathering and moving off back into the bush to continue feeding with the calf who was now staying very close to his mother after the ordeal. We always read and hear about how elephants family and social dynamics are something to behold but most people very rarely get to experience it on such a level where you actually see an elephant family actively help a member in distress, so this was quite a rare sighting for me,’ he concluded.

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