When a baby elephant fell over while trying to climb out of a small ditch at Switzerland’s Zoo Zurich, two adults rushed over within a few seconds to help. Though it’s not clear from the video whether the baby’s mother is one of the adults that come to its aid, elephants are known to have tight bonds with herd members outside their immediate family.
I’ve seen clips like this one before where the baby falls into a ditch or a mud puddle and can’t get out. Even though I know the baby is not in danger and the adults will help, it still breaks my heart to see the baby struggling. These two adult elephants are the heroes here. They immediately jumped in to help.
Mother and calf share a special connection, but adults have been known to watch over little ones that aren’t theirs. Other members of the clan may act as babysitters, a practice that helps young female elephants for motherhood. Zoo Zurich’s elephant facility was named for the Kaeng Krachan National Park in Thailand, where the Swiss zoo supports conservation for Asiatic Elephants.
As part of the effort, the zoo helps work toward resolving the “human-elephant conflict” by putting up protective fences to keep wild elephants from damaging plantation grounds. These types of efforts are necessary to educate the local population about the elephants and protect both the humans and elephants in the area.
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