Elephants : Gentle Giants

December 12, 2022
African Elephant face

Put me in the bush or on a game drive and I am in heaven.  I am not scared of anything that is in the wild.

Indeed, you should respect each creature, great or small.  Never disturb any animal or creature.  To be honest, sometimes I say to the ranger, please put the vehicle off. Let’s just sit and watch. Don’t drive around to get the best view. Allow them freedom. Certainly, we are visitors to their home.

It never used to be, but one of my favourite sightings is a herd of Elephants.  I had a terrible experience years ago, with an Ellie that was in musk, trapped between a tree and a gun ho ranger and he charged.  I was sitting on the back top tear on the game drive with my partner.  When I saw that angry Elephant start charging and the ranger start driving fast.  I found myself in the front with ranger!  I don’t know how it happened. But it was frightening!

I think the older you get the less you care! As a result, if I die by Elephant on a game drive, I would be happy.

These majestic creatures are known for their large size, long trunks, and iconic tusks. For one thing, safari-goers can often spot herds of elephants in national parks and game reserves, where they roam freely in their natural habitat.

Elephants are social animals, living in family groups led by a matriarch. The herds can consist of female elephants, called cows, and their young offspring. Male elephants, known as bulls, often form bachelor herds or live solitarily. And can be grumpy!

When you do come across a herd of Elephant, they are fascinating to watch. Equally, they are animated and are full of character.  If you are lucky, you will get to see them bathing in watering holes or rivers to cool off.  Mud bathing to protect their skin from the sun and pests and using their trunks to pull leaves and branches off trees to eat.

At the same time, I must say that one of the most unforgettable experiences on safari ambling through the bush and coming face to face with a young bull.  He was so close; I could smell him. In this case, seeing this giant up close and personal is special. With his powerful yet gentle demeanor, he created a sense of awe and admiration.  It was one of those moments, where I could not lift my camera. Beyond, paralyzed with pure joy!

I just felt I needed to be present as he crossed past us.  I could have touched him; he was that close.  The vehicle was full of tourists, and they were whimpering in fear.  I just looked at our ranger face, Patrick.  Immediately, I felt comfortable as he knew this bull. Hence, he had everything under control.

After, this insane sighting, the vehicle was a hive of laughter, tears, and joy!  Thus, sat smiling and was reminded, that I love my job.

With their sheer size, intelligence, and beauty, elephants are a highlight of any safari adventure.

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