On Saturday 6th April 2013 our precious Shimba was attacked by a lion. Seven-year-old Shimba has been with us since infancy. His mother died when she was translocated along with 250 other elephants from the Shimba Hills National Reserve to Tsavo East National Park, in a massive exercise to move some elephants out of Shimba National Park to elevate pressure on this small Sanctuary with a rare coastal forest, close to dense human. His mother was compromised from the outset with a severed trunk due to an old snare wound, but it was decided that she should join her elephant herd in the translocation rather than remain behind without them. In hind site this proved a fatal mistake and she died leaving behind a tiny dependent calf we called him Shimba.
Over the years Shimba has delighted many with his laid back charm, a short plump little elephant from the outset he has grown into a plump big boy now and is becoming more and more independent. It was one fateful night when he failed to return to his night stockades that Shimba got mauled by one of Tsavos infamous lions. He was found the following day by concerned Keepers as he made his way back to the safety of his human family and the Voi stockades. Clearly Shimba had had a torrid time, and he was extremely lucky to have survived for Tsavos lions are formidable foe.
His wounds were assessed cleaned and treated and fortunately were not life threatening. His return to health has taken time, but Shimba has instinctively known to stay within the safety of the stockades, and a close radius around the compound, with little Panda and Lualeni the little Zebra who are his new best friends for company during the day. He lets the Voi Keepers treat his wounds understanding they are helping him, and the older ex orphans return to visit from time to time to check on his progress. In the evening his Voi Unit elephant friends return to their night stockades and spend the night with him. Recently Shimba is now going further a field by day to browse and is obviously feeling stronger, and thanks to the magic of green clay his wounds are drying out well without infection which is always a worry with lion bites.