There is no where greener than Kibwezi Forest in the December rains and it is quite beautiful with wild flowers and lilies strewn everywhere. Needless to say the orphans have had an extremely fun month with more delicious food than they can cope with. As a result they are looking the picture of health. This month som huge rains storms and heavy wind have been challenging for the elephants and the Keepers particularly, and now the forest is filled with waterholes everywhere which provide great joy for not only our orphaned milk dependent babies but the wild elephants who are frequently almost daily now. Many of the visitors are bulls, but a few female herds with a number of babies have been visiting the Umani lodge waterhole in the evenings. The wild bulls are getting bolder all the time, and have begun to visit in day light hours too with the Keepers getting more and more sightings and photographs of them. Because of all the rainfall the terrapins are having a great time pond hopping, but one or two have run the gauntlet this season and found themselves trodden on by the elephants. Fortunately for them the Keepers are on hand to right them when they get upturned.
Quanza for a long time has enjoyed holding her own milk bottle with her trunk and this technique has not been lost on Zongoloni who has not only developed the technique but can take it one step further and lift the bottle off the ground without spilling and feed herself. She is the first elephant that has ever done this, as many have learnt to feed themselves, but kneeling on the ground to scoop the bottle with their trunks is a new development. We are sure this technique will be emulated by others in due course! The Keepers this month have captured some lovely photographs, with plenty of scratching pictures as with the rains, and the green grass, comes ticks. Elephants in the wild have developed a number of novel ways to get rid of the ticks and the forest is scattered with many strategic rocks and fallen tree logs that provide them with endless scratching enjoyment.