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They Had Me at "Baby Elephants"

I remember many years ago the World Wildlife Fund had a competition to vote for the world's cutest baby animal. I confidently voted for baby elephants - they are so awkward when they're young, unsure what to do with those long trunks hanging off their faces, huge feet that they trip over, and full of playfulness. When someone mentioned to me that Lusaka National Park had an elephant orphanage I knew I had to plan to visit.

After spending time driving through the park and watching the white rhino we were deposited at the Wildlife Discover Center with just minutes to spare before they opened the elephant viewing platform. Just as we arrived we saw the first of the little herd of orphans running towards the pen, where keepers were waiting with big bottles of milk. They elephants clearly knew the routine, going directly to the keepers, some taking the bottles themselves and others enjoying the snack while letting the keeper hold the bottle.

Turn your volume on for the video below so you can hear the contented grumbles of the elephants. And look for the littlest baby come dashing in!

Once the milk was finished it was time for a drink. It is delightful to watch elephants use their trunks to drink water. I found myself inhaling when one would put it's long trunk into the water, as if I too was sucking in a cool drink of water, then exhaling as the elephant emptied the water into it's mouth.

After their thirst was quenched it was time for the fun to begin.

Some found a pile of dirt which they threw over themselves repeatedly to protect themselves from the sun and bugs. The littlest one just rolled and rolled in the dirt.

The crowd thinned out and eventually I had to tear myself away from this wonderful experience. No one can ever convince me that baby elephants aren't the cutest babies in the world.

Bonus Zebra photos:

1 Comment

May 29

Love reading about your adventures!

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