On November 18 Mara Elephant Project received a phone call from our partners Friends of the Maasai Mara that a premature baby elephant was wasting away quickly in the Maasai Mara National Reserve (MMNR) because she wasn’t able to reach her mother’s teat. Though MEP generally responds to these types of distress calls when a mother has been killed as a result of human-elephant conflict, this was a special circumstance where a partner was in need of our assistance.
Dr. Limo from the KWS/DSWT Mara Mobile Vet Unit treating the baby elephant. Photo courtesy of Friends of Maasai Mara Founder Prince Harris Pems Taga Facebook page.
We flew the Karen Blixen Camp Ree Park Safari helicopter to the scene and when we arrived Dr. Limo from the Kenya Wildlife Service/David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Mara Mobile Vet Unit was already there and administering fluids. It took seven hours for the calf to be able to stand on her own. She was monitored overnight and then flown by us to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust orphanage in Nairobi where Angela Sheldrick was there to greet her.
We have since learned that the baby girl has been named Panya and is steadily improving each day. On December 15 Karen Blixen Camp posted an update on Facebook about the baby’s progress that was filmed at the orphanage. We hope to have more updates from the orphanage as her condition continues to improve.