This now fourteen-year-old orphan elephant didn’t forget about an act of kindness that allowed her to grow up and become a mom
Who was an orphan elephant from the age of five months.
Loijuk was raised by the caring people of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. This is an organization in Kenya that operates a sanctuary.
The Bond That Doesn’t End
Although Loijuk was eventually released from the sanctuary to return to the wild, she never forgot those humans who raised her.
She has adapted well to living in her natural setting, but on a monthly basis, she returns to visit her previous caretakers.
On one of these visits, Loijuk was not alone
Along side her was a very healthy looking elephant calf. She certainly was a newborn as it was estimated that she was only a few hours old.
The Caregivers Welcome Lili
As it common practice for those at the sanctuary to give names to the animals in their care, they felt it was only fitting to name the baby Lili.
A Touching Moment
Elephants by nature are very protective of their babies.
It is clear that Loijuk never forgot the people who cared for her and trusted them. She proved this by letting the head of the sanctuary get up close to Lili.
Like Her Mom
Lili displayed the same trusting characteristics as her Mother.
As the keeper patted the baby elephant, she pressed into his legs. It was obvious that if mom was going to trust this human, then so was the baby.
Establishing a Connection
The head keeper breathed into the baby’s trunk.
The caregivers of the elephants know that elephants have a very keen sense of smell along with an exceptional memory. To bond with the elephants, the keepers will breathe into their trunks. Believing that the elephants will remember their scents this way.
A Watchful Eye
During the next week, Loijuk didn’t stray far from the area of her previous caregivers.
It was almost as if she was allowing these keepers to keep a watch over her baby to make sure she remained healthy. When Lili first came to the area, she had been quite shakey on her feet. The keepers checked on her periodically throughout the week to make sure all was well.
During this particular time that Lili was born in was at the height of the Tsavo dry season.
The dry season makes it more difficult for the elephants to find food. The keepers were able to supplement Loijuk’s diet so she can care better for her baby.
The Elephant Family
Elephant moms don’t have to raise their babies on their own in the wild. There are other female elephants in the herd that will help with this. For Lili, her additional elephant caregivers were two other elephants that had also been orphaned at one time.
Lili will grow up and stay within the herd. It is hoped that this first experience with the keepers will remain with her during her adulthood. If so, then she will always know that the sanctuary is a safe haven that will always welcome her.
Protectors of Wildlife
This sanctuary focuses on the protection of elephants, and they have done some amazing work. To date, they have been able to raise 247 orphaned elephants. This all costs money, and they can’t do this alone.
Adopt A Baby Animal
These are just three who are up for adoption, which is Kiombo the elephant, Solio the rhino, and Kiko, the giraffe.
You can also adopt a rhino or a giraffe as well! Here are some examples of babies up for adoption.
The sanctuary has an adoption program where individuals can adopt an orphan for as little as $50. A year. They may not be able to take the elephant home with them, but they can make sure the keepers have the resources needed to tend for this most precious animals. As you can imagine, it takes more that one adopting parent to care for the needs of these animals every year.
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