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Orphaned Baby Elephants Emergency

Item # 58843

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The last two years have been among the deadliest on record for elephants in Africa. Poaching for ivory has reached epidemic proportions. Elephants with tusks are being slaughtered by the thousands and helpless baby elephants are left to perish.

Tragically, the elephants at Kafue National Park in Zambia are constantly under attack from poachers who will kill any elephant with tusks - even a mother elephant with a helpless baby by her side. Baby elephants are so helpless when left to fend for themselves, and will almost certainly die if not rescued. Every animal deserves a safe home, and a life without the threat of poaching and cruelty. The elephants at the Zambia Elephant Orphanage have suffered more in their young lives than any animal should. But with your help, they can have a second chance at life.

The Orphanage was started by Game Rangers International (GRI) to give orphaned baby elephants a safe home in which to grow so they can one day be released in Kafue National Park. Working in close collaboration with the Zambia Wildlife Authority and The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF), the Orphanage protects the baby elephants and provides them with nourishing food and medical care, as well as a nurturing, mothering presence. The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) is now joining forces with GRI and DSWF to help save a generation of Zambia's elephants by providing additional security, support for releasing the elephants back into the wild, food, medicine, and aiding the Keepers. The Keepers at the Orphanage provide everything the elephants need. They are there every step of the way for the baby elephants - to protect them, to feed them, to care for them, to guide them, and to be loyal companions.

You can help. Just $18 helps provide a day's worth of milk for an orphaned baby elephant in Zambia.


Update from the Field

October 2017

The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) has partnered with Game Rangers International’s Elephant Orphanage Project (EOP) to provide rescue, rehabilitation and eventual release of orphaned elephant calves in Zambia. A couple of the orphans, Chamilandu and Batoka, have been spending less time sleeping in the protective boma, moving a few kilometers away to feed with the younger orphan herd. As they begin the final steps towards release, IFAW hopes they are socializing with the wild elephants that roam Kafue National Park.

Recently, keepers and staff often hear wild elephants vocalizing at night, and are hopeful that Chamilandu and Batoka have been hanging around in the same areas during these times. Although they may be able to speculate on these encounters through GPS data from tracking collars, these interactions are rare to see and catch on film. One evening, a herd of eight elephants with one very young calf approached camp. With the sun still shining and end of the day football practice in full swing, the elephants appeared relaxed, feeding from trees as they slowly walked along the outskirts of camp. Not long after Chamilandu and Batoka appeared nearby, seemingly following the wild elephants. Although they kept their distance and were hesitant to join the herd, it was a very encouraging moment and a sign that they wanted to be close to their wild counterparts.


Update from the Field

June 2016

Muchichili is an orphaned elephant calf. He was spotted all alone on the island of Hulungwe in the Zambezi River, Zambia. Upon getting the call, a team from the Elephant Orphanage Project of Zambia drove to Hulungwe to rescue the orphan. After determining that a reunion with his herd was very unlikely, the team transported the calf back to the Lilayi Elephant Nursery outside Lusaka.

Upon sight of three other elephants at the Lilayi Elephant Nursery, 1½ year old Muchichili was exhausted but very excited and happy to have the company. Unfortunately, Muchichili experienced a post rescue ‘crash’ when he started to fade and refused to drink fluids. Our team put a drip into him, and combined with intensive support, Muchichili began to again show signs that he would be okay. He continues to be cared for with the hope that he will be released back into the wild with other elephants.

IFAW rescues and protects animals around the world. IFAW has had great success in helping rescue, raise, and release elephants back into wild, protected areas. They've helped restore elephants to Meru National Park in Kenya and dramatically reduced poaching there. They've helped protect and enrich the wildlife at Kenya's Tsavo and Amboseli National Parks. They're helping protect elephants in Liwonde National Park in Malawi, as well as helping bring elephants and rhinos back to Manas National Park in India. And they're helping create protected corridors between parks to allow elephants to safely travel their traditional migratory routes.

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