Among the Elephants Blog

Snared Calf
January 30, 2003
by David Daballen, Senior Research Assistant

Elephants are always prone to many risks, especially when they go outside the protected area and are likely to get snared or poached both of which always cause much stress or even result in death sometimes.

On 20-Jan-03 as I was looking for a specific bull, B1033 Apollo for re- collaring I found calf R33.95m who is about seven years, with a huge plastic on his rear foot, struggling to walk. We sent a radio message to Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to try and get hold of Ian Craig, who has been very helpful during our normal operations. We were lucky to find him and we darted the calf and removed the plastic snare.

When the poor thing woke up and he looked at us and also looked at his foot then called his family which came back very fast on realizing that their son is still alive. Luckily, the snare had not cut very deeply in to his flesh, and he had only a few scratches on his leg. Today he is all cured and up and running on his normal bull life. At the same time we did some collaring on 20-Jan-03 of Apollo, our interesting Shaba bull, whose collar battery we replaced. On 25-Jan-03 we collared a young male elephant, Uffe, who has a very interesting and extra ordinary behavior of sneaking up to estrus females, (who are usually guarded by musth bulls), and mounts them very fast like lightening which not all bulls can do!