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The Knysna Elephants: A Population Study Conducted Using Faecal DNA

The world’s southernmost free-ranging wild elephants live in the indigenous Knysna forest along South Africa’s southeast coast. For many years it has been assumed that only one, lone female elephant remained. New evidence, however, points to a more positive picture.

View or download the pdf to read the full article The Knysna Elephants: a Population Study.

Elephants On the Edge Fight Back by Caroline Williams

Two years ago the people of Bunyaruguru in western Uganda would think nothing of cycling to the nearby township of Katwe to meet friends and do business. Then one day a herd of elephants paid them a visit. They came from the bush, knocked down huts and garden plots, then left with nothing to show but a trail of destruction. Now elephants regularly block the road to Katwe, and villagers are too afraid to cycle past. To read the full article from New Scientist Print Edition.

Elephant Breakdown

Social trauma: early disruption of attachment can affect the physiology, behaviour and culture of animals and humans over generations. An essay by G. A. Bradshaw, Allan N. Schore, Janine L. Brown, Joyce H. Poole and Cynthia J. Moss.
To download the article pdf.

Speaking with Elephants by Deena Metzger

I never expected to enter into an alliance with elephants and it has only been a few years since I have begun to imagine what an alliance with an animal might mean. One cannot enter into such a relationship unless one’s entire world of assumptions and beliefs has changed radically. One does not seek this out. The task is rather to avoid refusing it when it is offered. Such experiences, which shatter the known world, are familiar to each of us even though, for the most part, we enter these ordeals alone carrying the burden of having to make private meaning of them. read more.

The Zebra Foal and the Gentle Giant by a friend at Meno A Kwena

The bull elephant, reluctantly at first, moved back a few feet as the desperately thirsty zebra foal limped to what little water was left in the water hole at Meno A Kwena.

The bull brooded as he watched the foal drink for a minute or two. The bleeding lion wound on the zebra’s leg got the bull’s attention, he seemed quite concerned about that and blew dust onto the deep gashes. The very young, not yet weaned, foal had escaped the lions but was starving to death. read more

Excerpt From Elephantoms by Lyall Watson

It was fine to be in a place where “as far as the eye can see” means something. It is no idle boast here, but a confident statement of fact. You can see almost forever….

Looking inland, I saw where fynbos and forest had been cleared to plant martial rows of alien pines and thought it a poor exchange. All that was left of the patch of forest out of which we had run in panic from a ghostly elephant was the great yellowwood that had been the focus of our attention. It was intact but, deprived of the forest around it, showed more than a hint of nervousness, like someone caught unawares, unclothed. The sea was just the same, rolling in almost in slow motion, leaving, even on this fine day, a haze over the rocky coastline. I closed my eyes and enjoyed the white noise of all this from the cliff top, letting it lap over me, evolving other oceans, other times spent whale watching—and when I opened my eyes, there was a whale right there. read more

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