Watch the special moment a herd of elephants stops what they are doing to help a calf that can’t get up the ridge.
Timothy Van Vuuren, 28-year-old content, media, and production manager was fortunate enough to witness this beautiful moment. Timothy loves wildlife and visits the bush as often as he can, he has a history of wildlife photography. He also used to be a game ranger, so he knows where to go to get the best wildlife footage!
This incredible sighting was captured in the MalaMala Game Reserve, where Tim used to be a game ranger in 2016. Tim shared the excitement of the sighting with LatestSightings.com:
“The scene was quite peaceful. 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. I knew that he would struggle to get up there. That’s when I decided to start filming.”
Lucikly for this baby elephant his family came to the rescue!
“I felt so sorry for the little one as it started to panic. Thankfully, with elephants being elephants and very family orientated, the calf was not left to struggle for too long. The family quickly came to the rescue. My guests and I were all equally blown away by the amazing family dynamic portrayed by the elephants as they worked together to help the calf! Our emotions of remorse did not last long before it turned into absolute relief. We were ecstatic when the elephants helped the calf get up the ridge.”
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“The sighting ended with the herd gathering and moving off back into the bush to continue feeding. The calf was now staying very close to his mother after the ordeal. We always read and hear about how elephant 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. This was quite a rare sighting for me.”
“When you’re at an elephant sighting in the wild, remember that distance is key. An elephant herd is highly protective of their young, especially in a situation like this one, where the animals are trying to help their young. In a situation like this, the elephants may be stressed and perceive your presence as a threat. This could cause them to become aggressive or defensive. Other than being careful and staying alert of the unforeseen behaviors that can sometimes come from an animal in the wild, just enjoy the magic of elephant families. You could possibly learn something from them.”