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

Name Gender Date Born Location Found Age on Arrival Comments Reason for being Orphaned
 KILAGUNI  Male  Thursday, December 11, 2008 He was found near the Chyulu Gate, Chyulu Hills National Park  Approximately 5 to 6 months old  He had been attacked by a predator, we suspect a Hyena, with injuries to his tail and hind quarters and ears.  Reason Unknown 

Latest Updates on KILAGUNI:

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

7/30/2015 - It was a quiet morning as the orphans strolled nonchalantly out from the stockade and settled down to eat lucerne. They fed peacefully until a wild herd consisting of six elephants disrupted the peace. For fear of being pushed, the orphans started leaving one by one for browsing. Mutara stopped and looked for a tree stump that she could use to scratch her feet.

After milk only Bongo participated in wallowing, the rest converged at the water trough to drink. As the orphans were busy taking water, Rapsu in a group of four wild elephants, joined the juniors. It's interesting to note how Rapsu is changing the wild groups he socializes with, like clothes! When he is not in a group, then he is walking on his own.

Soon after drinking water, Rapsu abandoned the wild bulls and joined the juniors on their way back to the browsing field. Teleki took the opportunity to learn some new pushing techniques from Rapsu. Though he was shorter than Rapsu, Teleki managed to tackle Rapsu for some time before he surrendered. In the afternoon the sun was hot making Rapsu, Mutara, Narok, Orwa and Vuria converge under a tree until the temperatures dropped to a favourable level. Rapsu parted ways with the juniors only to reappear at the stockade in evening where he joined eight bulls that were busy taking water. Chaimu, Kilaguni, Ishanga and Chemi chemi reported at the stockade in the afternoon to quench their thirst. Chemi chemi appears to have abandoned his group and seems to be securing a place in Chaimu's group now. Only time will tell if he is there to stay or he is doing a test to see if he can fit. Ishanga is surprising as she has stuck with Chaimu's herd for some time now. Ishanga used to be herd-less, moving from one herd to another. We are not sure if she is in this herd to stay now, only time will tell.

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

 Abdul prepares the antibiotic injection. Abdul takes down the details about Kilaguni's rescue.
Abdul prepares the antibiotic injection.
photo taken on 5/22/2009
Abdul takes down the details about Kilaguni's rescue.
photo taken on 5/22/2009

ORPHAN PROFILE FOR: KILAGUNI (foster now)


The 22nd May 2009 saw the arrival of another little orphaned elephant into our Nairobi Nursery, this time a male of approximately 5 – 6 months of age, who had been found alone and wounded, having somehow survived an attack by a predator, possibly a lone hyaena, because had there been more than just one, he would certainly not have been able to survive a pack assault. He was flown to the Nairobi Nursery from the Kilaguni Lodge airfield in Tsavo West National Park, and has been named “Kilaguni” since the Chyulu Gate is not far from the Lodge.

The flight to Tsavo.  The rescued calf waits for the aircraft at the airstrip.

The Kilaguni airstrip.  Kilaguni still on the back of the vehicle.

Feeding Kilaguni.  Kilaguni surrounded by some of those who rescued her and the rescue team of Keepers.




He arrived in the Nursery just after dark on the 22nd, and by torchlight we were able to assess the extent of his wounds. His entire tail had been bitten off, leaving just a swollen stump at the base, with surrounding tooth punctures clearly visible. Bite sized chunks had been taken from both ears, and there were wounds on his back legs, some fairly deep. However, He was in fair physical condition, so had probably only been without his mother for a couple of days, and had probably been beside her body when the hyaena turned up to feed on the carcass, the fact that the carcass was there probably the reason why he managed to escape being killed. The reason for his being orphaned is not definitely known, but with the situation as it is today, one would be forgiven for making the assumption that it is likely to be as a result of poaching for ivory. Sadly this is becoming ever more commonplace throughout the country ever since the sale of the Southern African stockpiles, exacerbated by the presence of Chinese road construction workers in the country eager to acquire ivory, plus the down-turn in tourism which has impacted even further on revenue allocated for field operations. Persisting drought conditions following the failure of the long rains and the illegal intrusion of livestock into the Protected Areas competing with wildlife for food and introducing disease is another factor that impacts on the survival of elephants.

The rescue plane on the Kilaguni airstrip.  Abdul prepares the antibiotic injection.

The chunk out of Kilaguni's ear is evident in this photograph.

The calf was transported in the back of the KWS vehicle.  Hyena's had completly severed the calf's tail.jpg



Little “Kilaguni” was a remarkable 6 month old baby in that he was immediately loving to the Keepers, despite the pain of his wounds having to be cleaned and dressed, and the usual prophylactic injections he had to endure from day one. Desperately sucking on their fingers, and desperate for milk and water, there was no hint whatsoever of aggression or fear from the start, which in an elephant of that age is most unusual and usually cause for concern – too calm for comfort, as experience has taught us over the years. His stomach was in a mess so he was put on a course of antibiotics plus the usual Blockers and on day two, he was allowed to join the other Nursery elephants out in the bush, having made friends with Tassia, his next door neighbour at night in the adjoining partition of one of the stockades. We can only assume that having been through such a terrifying ordeal without the protection of his mother or the herd, subsequent events brought comfort and enormous relief to be handled with care and kindness once more, and more importantly find himself not alone in such a strange setting. The input of the other orphans is always what imparts most comfort to any Nursery newcomer.

Preparing Kilaguni for the flight

The young calf is prepared for the flight  The KWS officers and rangers involved in rescuing Kilaguni from near the Chyulu Gate.

Abdul takes down the details about Kilaguni's rescue.

Checking on Kilaguni during the flight.  Inside the rescue plane.jpg

Flying back to Nairobi over the Chyulu Hills with Mt. Kilimanjaro behind.

Kilaguni integrates with the other orphans at the nursery  Kilaguni taking a bottle of milk once in the Nairobi Nursery.


   

Please see the resources above for more information on KILAGUNI

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