This week, Peace Parks TV is following an elephant translocation that will see 23 elephants moved from an area where they face human-wildlife conflict in Maputo National Park’s buffer zone to a safe haven in Zinave National Park. Everything had been going smoothly, but after darting a family herd, the team discovers that one of the baby elephants has serious injuries that were sustained days before the capture operation.
The vets wait in anticipation for the calf to wake up, and after a few tense moments, the elephant manages to get to its feet and is reunited with its mother and other family members who immediately surround it to form a protective shield. Elephants have highly developed emotional and social behaviour, as was clearly on display here. They form incredibly strong family bonds, so it is integral to the wellbeing of all the animals that the herd is moved together.
After arriving in Zinave National Park, the team awaits with bated breath after the long, bumpy road to see how the tiny calf handled the journey. Although it was monitored along the way, it was difficult to see the small animal clearly because the mom and the other family members were hovering around it to keep it safe.
Thankfully, it’s not long until everyone can breathe a sigh of relief as they spot the little elephant hopping out on its mother’s heels, safely making its way out of the crates to join the rest of the family already exploring their new home.
To avoid any human-wildlife conflict, Peace Parks Foundation, Mozambique’s National Administration for Conservation Areas, Mozambique Wildlife Alliance and Conservation Solutions are all working together to give this herd the opportunity to roam freely and safely in Zinave National Park.