One of the very few unspoiled countries in the World, Tanzania, is home to the largest elephant population in the world. Elephants are among the most exuberantly expressive of creatures. Joy, anger, grief, compassion, love; the finest emotions reside within these hulking masses.
Through years of research, scientists have found that elephants are capable of complex thought and deep feeling. In fact, the emotional attachment elephant’s form towards family members may rival our own.
Around Kilimanjaro the Mountain Elephants live their easy lives without any enemies to threaten them, but things are changing. The corridors and passageways known to elephants for centuries are being used for farmland. Farmers are closing the routes to safeguard the grounds they work on. Without these routes, it is becoming harder and harder for the elephants to reach safe ground in the summer’s heat.
Survival is becoming tougher for these mountain elephants. Poachers are a common sight around Kilimanjaro, and it is easy for an elephant to become victim to one of the traps. Elephants have very good memories, they mourn their passing loved ones even many years after their death. When an elephant walks past a place that a loved one died he or she will stoop and take a silent pause that can last several minutes.
The national parks are the last safe havens for the remaining herds of Elephants. the Ngorongoro crater, the cradle of mankind, even has a retirement place for old elephants.Imagine cresting a hill in the Serengeti Woodlands and seeing before you an entire valley filled with elephants. There are so many that at first you think they are Kopjes, only that they move, they turn, test the air, and carry on feeding, squealing, rumbling, and doing all of the myriad of things that has made the African Elephant such a celebrity of the animal world.
In the Serengeti, the elephants live easy lives. They are protected by the park’s boundaries. Only the young can be in danger for hungry predators. There is no greater love in elephant society then maternal love. The whole family works together to make the best for the young ones.The matriarch is passing on her knowledge to her children. The most important lesson she teaches is a lesson of survival and routes to take in search for water, because without water, the elephants cannot survive.
In Elephants on the Run we will have a close look at the elephants family structure, the problems they face and their will to survive.