Does a photograph of an adorable baby elephant pull at your heart? These little guys were in the back courtyard at Mfuwe Lodge while their elders ate mangoes. They got tired, and one fell asleep. Like a true sibling or cousin, the other wouldn’t rest until he had what looked like the best napping spot. He pestered the sleeping baby relentlessly until they both collapses in a tangle of limbs into what looked uncomfortable, and they fell asleep.

 It’s pretty funny to watch baby elephants do just about anything. They usually can’t control their trunks at this age and pick up food to put in their mouths. Sometimes they miss the mouth completely, slamming the food against their foreheads like human babies with a rattle.

When they fight for the same space, they move very slowly. It’s like watching a turf battle in slow motion. I love this photo because here the elephants know they are so safe, their babies can nap.

When a poacher shoots an elephant, usually one with the biggest tusks they can find, they often leave orphaned babies who are too young to forage for themselves. The elders aren’t around to teach their young what they need to know to thrive in the wild. With luck, an orphan will make it to a sanctuary where they will help it grow and return to the wild. I love all wildlife in Zambia, except maybe for hippos. Without your support, elephants won’t be around in another 5 to 10 years at the current rate of poaching. 

Written by Patricia Cole

An Africa Hope Fund board member for 7 years, Pat is a writer and a conservation activist. After traveling to Zambia, she became dedicated to helping Africa Hope Fund provide education to the next generation of Africans and ensure their future by protecting wildlife. Find Patricia on Facebook and Twitter, or on her websites www.writepatwrite.com and www.patmcole.com.

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Carol Van Brugen