~May 21, 2015~~
Keeper Saved His Life 26 Years Ago
By Melissa Cronin
A man who once saved an elephant calf came face-to-face with that calf — now a massive bull — nearly three decades later.
Twenty-six years ago, a 3-month-old elephant followed his mother and their herd out into a clearing near Kenya’s Imenti Forest. A crowd of villagers, fearing for their valuable crops, surrounded the herd, firing off poison darts and spears and slaughtering those who were unable to flee.
The calf was struck in the head and fell unconscious to the ground where he seemed doomed to the fate of the others.
But a group of rangers arrived on the scene just in time to rescue the calf, along with one other, and brought the two of them to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT). The baby elephant, who was named Ndume, was panicked at first, crying out and searching for his mother.
Soon, Ndume began adjusting to life at the rescue center and recovering under the care of a Kenyan keeper named Joseph Sauni.
He was released back to his home in the wild two years later.
Ndume is now flourishing in the wild among a herd of other orphaned elephants and has become one of the herd’s largest bulls. He hadn’t been spotted much lately, but a recent encounter in the Tsavo National Park was caught on film.
Joseph Sauni, the keeper who fed Ndume milk from a bottle as a calf, came upon his old friend. The footage — and the delight of Sauni — is touching:
~~Reuniting with 26 year old Ndume~~
~~Published on Feb 25, 2015~~
Ex-orphan and fully grown elephant bull, Ndume, has been living wild for over 20 years among Tsavo National Park’s elephants but has been rarely seen in recent years. In a magical meeting in February 2015, he returned closer to home – watch our short video where he meets his former elephant Keepers!
Read the full account of this special meeting between Ndume and his former Keepers at: https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org
Born from one family’s passion for Kenya and its wilderness, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is today the most successful orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world and one of the pioneering conservation organisations for wildlife and habitat protection in East Africa.
Founded in 1977 by Dr. Dame Daphne Sheldrick D.B.E, in honor of the memory of her late husband, famous naturalist and founding Warden of Tsavo East National Park, David Leslie William Sheldrick MBE, the DSWT claims a rich and deeply rooted family history in wildlife and conservation.
The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust embraces all measures that compliment the conservation, preservation and protection of wildlife. These include anti-poaching, safe guarding the natural environment, enhancing community awareness, addressing animal welfare issues, providing veterinary assistance to animals in need, rescuing and hand rearing elephant and rhino orphans, along with other species that can ultimately enjoy a quality of life in wild terms when grown.
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