The following is information on the Elephant Orphan named: ZURURA  (foster now)

Name Gender Date Born Location Found Age on Arrival Comments Reason for being Orphaned
 ZURURA  Male  Saturday, September 3, 2005 Found on Mukuki Ranch between Tsavo West and East  approximately seven to eight weeks old  He was found by miners having fallen into an open face Ruby mine on Mukuki Ranch  Man Made Cause for Separation 

Latest Updates on ZURURA:

View to Location map for ZURURA (opens a new window)

Most Recent Keeper's Diary Entry: (view all the latest entries for ZURURA)

5/28/2016 - Yatta and Mulikas groups reported to the stockade compound at the same time that the orphans were coming out of their stockades. Laragai met with Naserian and the two exchanged morning greetings as the rest of the orphans came and surrounded Naserian demanding morning greetings too.

Laragai saw Wiva standing close to her mother with the nannies nowhere in sight and took this opportunity to go and practice babysitting Wiva. Garzi joined in and stood close by watching Wiva and Laragai. Yetu, one of Wiva's nannies, wasn't happy to see Wiva with Laragai and Garzi and ran over at which point she pulled Wiva's tail to try and discourage her from associating with Laragai. Laragai who has never seen eye to an eye with Yetu warned Yetu to not dare to try and take Wiva away from her. Yetu rumbled for the other nannies to come and assist her and it wasnt long before Loijuk and Mwende came to see what the problem was. As there was nothing alarming taking place that needed their attention they just stood close by watching Wiva interact with the orphans.
Orwa engaged Makena in a pushing game before going to play with Meibai who was enjoying a game of rolling on the ground. Suguta played with Ololoo as Orok played with Zurura.

At the browsing field Narok settled to browse with Lemoyian as Olsekki browsed with Enkikwe. At the mud bath Olsekki, Siangiki and Enkikwe once again headed straight for wallowing after taking their milk. Once they had cooled down the three new babies walked up to the water trough for a drink of water. Bomani spent some time scratching against the acacia trees while Teleki rolled in the soil dust bathing. Laragai was quick to come over and enjoy a scratching session against Teleki who was still lying down enjoying the dust bath. In the afternoon the orphans converged under a tree to relax until the temperatures dropped to a favorable level so that they could continue their browsing activities. Olsekki, Orwa and Narok spent some time soil dusting before rejoining the rest of the group who were browsing close by.

The Two Latest Photos of ZURURA: (view gallery of pictures for ZURURA)

 Zururu Zurura staying close to Naserian
photo taken on 5/1/2007
Zurura staying close to Naserian
photo taken on 10/31/2005


Yet another call for help, this time to rescue a tiny calf that had fallen down a open faced mine dug for rubies on "Mukuki Ranch" between Tsavo West and East during the moonless night of the 28th October. This area forms a migratory corridor long used by elephants to move between the two Tsavos, but which is now densely populated by an expanding human population making passage extremely dangerous for elephants. Therefore they have taken to streaking through at speed under cover of darkness, in trouble should daylight find them betwixt and between their two safe havens. Disturbed earth all around the pit was evidence that the herd had struggled long and hard to retrieve the precious calf that had fallen in during this process, but eventually the Matriarch had to make the terrible decision to abandon the trapped tiny baby in order to ensure the safety of the rest of her family before daybreak. By morning, what seemed to be a ghost herd had vanished entirely. There was no sign of an elephant anywhere.

Zurura with the miners that rescued him  Zurura with the Keepers who came to rescue him

Zurura follows the Keepers  His rescue attracted enormous attention

As the Miners took their early morning tea, they heard the muffled bellows of the baby and set about searching the area following the sound, and peering into the many deep pits that dotted the ruby rich area. Eventually, they came across the traumatized baby elephant deep inside one that had already yielded some rubies, and taking this as an omen of having been led to this particular pit which might yield many more rubies, they were at pains to save the calf’s life rather than kill it. Having hauled it out, they wrote the name ‘ZURURA’ on one ear, using a felt tip pen, “Zurura” being the Swahili word for ‘The Wanderer’, and in deference to them for having saved his life, that is what he has been named.

Once back at the stockades he took some milk  Zurura at the Voi Stockades before the rescue aircraft arrived

While waiting for the rescue aircraft Zururu takes a dust bath

The calf was taken to Mwatate Police Station, who contacted The Kenya Wildlife Service authorities in Tsavo East. They in turn contacted The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and we immediately sent our mobile Veterinary Unit to investigate. The unit arrived to a calf swamped by people, all touching feeling and holding him. He was remarkably calm despite what must have been a very frightening time for him. In the absence of any wild elephants in the area, the tiny baby bull was driven to our Voi Elephant Stockades where it was fed milk and rehydration both of which he gulped down enthusiastically and spent time at the stockades having a sand bath while waiting for the Nairobi Keepers to arrive. He is remarkably tame for a calf that was only this morning a wild elephant, he followed the Keepers and offered little resistance.

Taking his milk once at the Nairobi nursery  Zurura with Edwin

A Rescue Plane was sent to the Voi airstrip with three Keepers from Nairobi on board, and the calf was flown up to the Nursery where he is now in the stable next door to little “Ndololo”. Both are of a similar age, we estimate him to be 7 to eight weeks; both baby bulls, and both have had a most traumatic beginning to life but who we hope will find solace in each other.

Zurura is introduced to the other orphans  Zurura staying close to Naserian

Makena and Zurura on the right of picture


Please see the resources above for more information on ZURURA

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