Larro continues to be an exceptional mini matriarch. She is incredibly nurturing and loves when the whole herd is together as a unit. The Keepers were reminded of this one morning, when they let the older orphans out first. While Shukuru, Rama, Naboishu, and Mukkoka headed into the forest without a backwards glance, Larro refused to leave the stockade compound until the youngsters had been let out of their stables. While she is very nurturing, Larro can also be a disciplinarian when needed. We saw this when Olorien kept back-kicking Naleku unprovoked, which created lots of friction between the pair. Larro initially wanted the hot-headed girls to sort it out amongst themselves, but when the situation continued to escalate, she stepped in and sent Olorien away to consider her actions. For the rest of the month, Larro kept a close eye on the pair.
Kindani, Bondeni, and Kinyei remain best friends and the fun trio of the Nursery. Kinyei is the quiet, calm one; Kindani is the confident one and can sometimes be a bit of a bully; and our little boy Bondeni is the cheeky one. In fact, everyone is enchanted by Bondeni — even the wild baboons of Nairobi National Park! He was determinedly trying to chase them away one morning, but because of his diminutive stature, the baboons seemed more interested in playing with him. Bondeni became very frustrated when he realized they were not intimidated by his presence and even put his tiny feet up on the tree trunk, as if in an attempt to climb after them.
Little Esoit, our newest rescue, has settled in incredibly well. He is such a self-assured, cheerful young bull. While he has made lots of friends within the herd, Roho, his nighttime neighbour, remains his favourite companion. Their games often begin the moment they exit their stables in the morning and continue for the rest of the day. Fueled by his confidence, Esoit is always eager to play with Mukkoka and Naboishu. These older bulls pay him special attention, even naughty Naboishu, who remains a menace during milk feeding times.
Ziwadi only likes to socialize with the other orphans if the mood strikes her, but she always has time for Rama. These gentle souls are two of a kind, happiest when quietly browsing side by side. Rama remains very shy, but he has been settling in more with each passing month. He has always been a bit apprehensive of Kindani and Olorien, as they sometimes bully him. Recently, however, he has been standing up to them with great success. At the end of July, Rama even challenged Mukkoka to a short strength testing match. It was the first time he had ever done such a thing, and the Keepers thoroughly enjoyed watching them play together.
Maxwell also enjoyed a wonderful month. Early July was punctuated by some heavy rainstorms, much to his delight. While the youngest orphans prefer shelter inside their stables, Maxwell relishes these conditions. He can be seen frolicking around his stockade, rolling in the mud and savouring each raindrop. Most mornings, Max likes to interact with the orphaned elephants as they head out into the forest. Sometimes, however, he gets very caught up in sorting his greens and can't be bothered to go greet them!