By Rodge More O’Ferrall
When I was in Nairobi this August I decided to visit the Elephant Orphanage after reading the blog entry “What are we going to do?” I was so moved by the experience that I have decided to ‘foster’ a male baby elephant called Barsilinga – rescued earlier this year.
I was struck by the impact that poaching has on elephants in the area around Olkoroi camp. At least the orphanage is doing something constructive by rescuing the very young offspring of poached adult females. I will have a chance to visit him on my next trip in November. Elephants are such majestic and intelligent animals that have been walking the area very near the camp for many hundreds of years. It would be great if the community can come to recognise their value and become involved in protecting them.
The David Sheldrick Wildlife fund is doing something constructive about this on a worldwide basis. Here below is Barsilinga’s story:
Gunshots were heard during the evening of 13th April 2012 by the community of the Lpus-La-Mpasion area near Wamba in the Samburu tribal area of Northern Kenya. The next morning (14th) a severely wounded female Elephant with a calf at foot was spotted in the area, bullet wounds in the chest area and front legs had rendered her barely able to even move. Yet another victim of the ivory trade, and a grizzly reminder of the suffering attached to each piece of ivory that is sold and bought. Her end was a painful one, full of suffering, and her calf would have been a victim too had he not been one of the lucky few rescued… Read the rest of the story and more about the wonderful work the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is doing – http://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/updates/updates.asp?ID=422#.UFYgYNNhjRw.email