Wednesday, 6th February 2013
PYGMY ELEPHANT FINDS A NEW PARENT – It was only just a while ago I read the heart rendering story of a baby Pygmy Elephant that was found next to its dead mother trying in vain to wake her up.
According to the news reports its mother had been poisoned, and whether this was deliberate or accidental is yet to be determined. This is not the first time that wildlife experts have come across a poisoned Pygmy Elephant in the tropical rain forests of Malaysia; indeed there have now been 14 such reports.
If the baby Elephant had not been spotted it to would have died, probably of starvation, however it is so heartwarming to know that the baby Pygmy Elephant is now doing well and being cared for by Augustin David, a keeper at Lok Kawi zoo near Kota Kinabalu.
There are fears that Joe, which is the name given to the Pygmy Elephant, does require 24 hour care to ensure he stays healthy but above all doesn’t feel abandoned, which could lead him to dying of a broken heart.
“He is far from safety yet. It’s too soon to be sure that he will make it – sometimes baby elephants can look OK and then die suddenly.” Dr Diana Ramirez, the vet overseeing Joe’s recovery
Looking at Augustin and Joe play together is a real joy and you can see the two certainly have created an extremely tight bond, which will help little Joe through the trauma of losing his mother.
As you can see by the images, Joe appears to be recovering and it is nice to know that someone cares for him deeply enough to dedicate such a lot of time; although I’m not sure Augustin would regard this as work, but rather more of a passion and a love for Joe.
From the reports it is clear that Joe has a way to go yet before his is out of the woods, regarding his health. Experts are saying that baby Elephants are prone to colic, but providing he survives to the age of 6 to 8 month he should grow into a strong Pygmy Elephant.
It is unlikely that Joe, if he does survive; and I am certainly rooting for the little fella, is unlikely ever to be released into the wild, but rather be kept on the 280 acre park reserve, where there are currently 16 other Pygmy Elephants who have been orphaned and survived.