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

Name Gender Date Born Location Found Age on Arrival Comments Reason for being Orphaned
 MURERA  Female  Monday, September 7, 2009 Meru National Park  About 2 and a half years old  She was spotted by Offbeat Safari guides. She had been on her own for several days.  Poaching 

Latest Updates on MURERA:

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

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

1/28/2016 - During the night a few wild elephants came to the stockades and had a drink water from the water trough leaving their dung droppings in the area. When Ziwa and Faraja caught the scent of the wild elephants dung in the morning they decided to try and see if they could catch up with their wild friends who were headed towards the Chyulu hills National Park. Murera and Sonje with the rest of the babies were left behind and it was not long before Faraja started to rumble when he realized that the two of them were on their own and that if they went too far afield they risked missing their milk feed. Murera also started to rumble and called the two youngsters to return to the group as she was worried that the wild elephants may manage to draw the two boys into their group taking them away from the Nursery herd.

When the babies arrived at the mudbath Lima Lima spotted two turtles floating and swimming in the water and it was not long before Sonje and Zongoloni also saw this and made a bee line for the mudbath. Zongoloni stepped into the water and started kicking her feet in an effort to chase the turtles away. Her actions were all in vain as the turtles were happy where they were and had no intention of leaving the water before they were ready to do so.

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

 Murera with the herd Murera with Julius
Murera with the herd
photo taken on 3/8/2012
Murera with Julius
photo taken on 3/8/2012


At about 11 a.m. during the morning of the 21st February 2012, Mr. Piers Winkworth of the Offbeat Safaris Tented Camp in Meru National Park noticed a lone young elephant calf, who appeared to have a broken leg. The Camp Guides said that they had seen this orphaned elephant over the past few days, and apparently KWS Rangers had received a report about it some 3 weeks ago, but subsequently had been unable to trace it.

Piers Winkworth called The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust to alert them about this orphan, and forwarded photographs of it so that they could assess its approximate size and age. He then drove to KWS Headquarters to get permission for the rescue of this calf and organize some Rangers to help with its capture. The Keepers rescue team landed at the Meru airstrip and were driven to the orphans location.

Boarding the rescue plane  Scenes form below during the flight to Meru

Landing in Meru  The plane landed in Meru National Park

The Keepers go to help capture the orphan  The Keepers and KWS go to capture the orphan

Transporting the orphan to the rescue plane

By 5 p.m. the calf was safely captured and transported to the Caravan Rescue Plane waiting at Meru Mulika Lodge airfield. It was a young female, just over 2 years of age, severely lame from possibly having trodden on poisoned elephant spikes hidden just beneath the soil of an elephant trail – a particularly brutal and cruel means of poaching not uncommon these days. By 8 p,m. the calf was safely back in the Nairobi Nursery, but too wild to handle, despite being incapacitated both by the foot injury to the one hind leg, and what looked liked a dislocated hip joint on the other hind leg.

Abdi gives the orphan anti-biotic while she is being prepared for the journey to the airstrip  Loading the orphan in the rescue plane

The orphan arrives at the Nursery at night  Amos with the orphan as they prepare to off load her from the plane

Lifting the calf out the rescue plane  The orphan arrives at the Nursery at night

However, she took water, and throughout the night, a little milk, but collapsed the next day and had to be put on life support during the afternoon of the 22nd. This gave us a chance to take a closer look at the injured foot of one hind leg, and to clean out the deep holes in the sole, disinfect and pack them with green clay, and administer a long acting anti-biotic injection. The next day the Vet came to see her and assisted in cleaning her wounds again. The one hind leg had 3 deep puncture wounds caused by stepping on elephant spikes, while the other leg has some extensive internal tissue damage which our Vet has deemed healable over time with plenty of rest. “Murera” (As she has been named) spent her first few days at the Nursery stockades, as her wounds needed cleaning daily and she could not put any weight at all on the injured leg. All the Nursery inmates would crowd around her stable, giving her rumbles of love and encouragement that hopefully will impart the will to live.

The wounds being cleaned  Murera's wounded foot

Murera patiently waits while the Keepers clean her wounds  An example of elephant spikes collected by one of our anti-poaching teams

Cleaning the wounds  The Keepers working hard to save the orphans life

Hassan comforting Murera  Abdi preparing injections

Murera being put on a drip  Putting her on a drip

Murera on a drip

To keep her company Orwa would stay behind and act as her playmate and companion. They bonded over those few days so much so that Orwa had to be moved next door to Murera’s stockade as she would get stressed in the evening when he left for his quarter.

Within a week, her wounds started healing well and she was able to put a little more weight on her injured hind leg. After 2 weeks she was able to join the orphan herd closeby which had obvious positive effect on her wellbeing and as a result her healing process. Although the ligament damage from the fall will take several months to fully heal she is so far doing very well and showing signs of improvement everyday.

We are enormously grateful to Mr. Piers Winkworth who went to a great deal of trouble to ensure the rescue of little Murera and to the Meru Park Rangers who assisted so professionally with her capture. We all hope and pray that in the fullness of time, Murera will live to forget all the pain and suffering to which she has been subjected, and will come to understand that not all humans are “bad”!

Murera with Julius  Murera with the herd

Murera with Mutara and Naipoki  Murera & Naipoki

Murera with Naipoki


Please see the resources above for more information on MURERA

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