Before dawn broke today we received devastating news from our head keeper Benjamin at Ithumba
Before dawn broke today we received devastating news from our head keeper Benjamin at Ithumba. Five year old Sabachi had been attacked by hyenas outside the stockades in the early hours of the morning, and despite being in the company of Suguta’s group along with wild elephants, his friends had been unable to save him.
The Keepers awoke to elephants trumpeting and screaming at 5am in the morning and rushed out into the darkness to see what was unfolding. There they found Sabachi fighting for his life with hyenas locked onto him. Eventually the Keepers and the elephants managed to create enough drama for the hyenas to skulk off, but Sabachi by this stage was in a terrible state. Dr. Poghon from the Tsavo Mobile Veterinary Unit flew to Ithumba at day break, but the prognosis very tragically was that Sabachi needed to be euthanized.
We suffered a similar loss down at Voi when our beloved Shimba was attacked by lions and never recovered, finally succumbing to his wounds months later in 2013. Sabachi was struggling through this dry season and his condition had deteriorated. We had for months supplemented his diet with extra milk, copra cake and Lucerne, which he would return for as and when he chose. He was very much part of the Suguta semi-dependent herd and he was actually in their company together with wild elephant friends when this tragedy unfolded.
While his end can be deemed an act of nature, it is extremely sad and has left us all heartbroken.
To view Sabachi’s full life profile covering his time with us please click here: https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/orphans/sabachi