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Shukuru continues to improve day by day and with that we have seen her behavior change too. She is much more playful and looks stronger too. During the public visit today she was wonderful; she finished her two bottles before gently getting into the mud bath, tactfully spraying herself with the muddy water. Sometimes she accidentally sprayed some mud onto the keepers, her friends, and even some of the visitors there that day to see the orphans. Everyone was happy when she submerged herself in the water with her legs splayed and rolled around in happiness. Ndiwa played with Malkia in the far corner before Sana Sana interrupted them, then a slight push and pull gave started between Sana Sana and Malkia. Mteto and Sagala were quietly settled in the far corner as Ndotto, Lasayen, Mundusi and the matriarch Mbegu sprayed themselves with dust from the big heap of loose soil.

As the babies were coming home to bed at the 5pm visit today, Musiara stopped at the point where the foster parents line up to talk to the Head Keeper who was giving the talk. The little boy touched and patted the Head Keeper, perhaps wondering if he had any milk on him, until his keeper who was waiting to feed him came to get him and lead him to his stockade for bed.

Shukuru improves every day

Sana Sana with Mbegu

Sagala with Ndiwa

Funny little Musiara

Jotto out in the bush


Over the last few weeks we have mentioned how Ndotto is becoming more and more independent. Today was no different and he decided to leave the others and the keepers and browse deep in the forest. When it was time for the second, older group to make their way down to the mud bath for their milk, the keepers realized he was missing from the group. Luckily Ndotto realized from his ‘tummy clock’ that it was milk time and made his way down to the mud bath via an alternative route, just as the first group were leaving. He has his milk bottles and started dusting himself as the others made their way down for their bottles too. As the others arrived Ndotto sneaked closer to the wheelbarrow to try his luck in stealing another milk bottle. Esampu was also there sucking up all the extra milk, but Mundusi pushed her knocking her into the wheelbarrow and causing some of the bottles to fall out. Ndiwa and Sana Sana stayed away from the mud hole, feeding on the green branches put out while the rest of their friends enjoyed a mud bath. 

Independent Ndotto

Esampu with Malima

Sana Sana stayed away from the mud hole

Sana Sana having her milk bottle


The relationship between Sattao and the matriarch of the Nursery herd is growing every day. This morning Mbegu was making the rounds from one stockade to another in search of leftover pellets and Sattao was following behind. She walked into Shukuru’s room and so did Sattao, and she proceeded to pick up pellets whilst Sattao picked up the ones that dropped to the ground. Their fun activity was short-lived, as they were driven out by the keepers to the others who were swiftly making their way into the forest. Best friends Ndotto and Lasayen were pushing each other in an open area whilst we watched Murit walk over to interrupt Sagala who was quietly dusting herself. The jealous little boy Musiara made sure no other little ones approached the keepers whilst they had their breakfast. Musiara pushed Kiasa but did not know that Maktao, who was standing close by, had improved his defense system. Maktao bit Musiara’s tail which prompted the small boy to cry out for help. His cry drew the attention of Godoma and Malkia who quickly separated the fighting babies.  

Sattao with Mbegu

Sattao and Mbegu

Murit playing on a tree

Naughty Maktao has taken to biting!


All the orphans in the older herd seemed to want to get to the mud bath area for their milk before it was their time today. As Godoma’s first group was waiting to walk down, Ndotto came out of the forest to join them; fortunately there was still time and he was escorted back to his own group. Godoma’s group were very well behaved at visiting today, and only Enkesha decided to have a mud bath. Maisha was in her usual favourite corner and the visitors were busy taking photos of her. Musiara with his smiling face was having a good time with the school children along the rope cordon. As the group were almost about to leave, Ndiwa, Malkia and Tagwa came running in towards the wheelbarrow. They had sneaked away from their group and arrived early, so the younger ones were all surprised to see them! Enkesha ran out of the mud pool where she had been enjoying a mud bath, and the older three only ended up staying a few minutes before they went back out to the forest with the first group!  

The orphans were all in a hurry today!

Ndotto came out looking for his milk

Sweet Enkesha

Ndiwa wanted her milk early


Elephants are very clever regardless of their age, for even when they are young we can get a sense of this intelligence. In this instance we are talking about Mbegu. Today she knew when one of the little babies had joined the herd in the forest, despite being very far away deep in the trees. She was spotted leaving the group she was with and walking towards the little one, clearing the path by moving the fallen branches and sticks as she walked. This is because she knew the little one was weak and not very well. We had not seen her do this before but she obviously knew she had to clear the path for her so she could walk with her.

It has been quite a while since we saw Ndotto and Lasayen engaged in games but today they were involved in a lengthy pushing game, remembering the early days when they used to wrestle all the time. Mundusi and Ngilai also gave the audience something to smile about as they played during the public visit.

Mbegu with Musiara

Lovely Mbegu

Ndotto out in the bush

Lasayen in a playful mood




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