3 month old Nkala is the latest orphaned elephant to join the herds at the Elephant Orphanage Project (EOP). He was rescued last week in Kafue National Park, and was actually discovered by the local community who noticed him wandering alone among their cattle. Thanks to Game Rangers International’s community radio show, the local community at the Nkala Game Management Area were aware of EOP’s work and knew who to contact to initiate rescue. The EOP team first assessed the health of this little elephant, before transporting him to Camp Phoenix. Although he was tired, thirsty and hungry, this 3 month old calf was fighting fit and in relatively good health.

Due to his young age, plans were then made to transport him to Lilayi Elephant Nursery. Royal Air Charters helped fly the calf to the nursery. During the trip, Nkata was mildly sedated; amazingly he was even settled enough to happily munch on some browse. This elephant is currently teething so will chew on branches, but still at 3 months is totally milk dependent, hence the need to get him to the Lilayi nursery. Upon arrival, Nkala ventured out into the boma area to investigate his new surroundings. At such a young age, Nkala is incredibly vulnerable and now has to adjust to a massive life change; losing his mother and family, as well as adapting to a new diet. This is a critical time for him so he is under observation; however staff are already pleased with his progress. Nkala was named after the community that found him and his name means ‘to stay’ at the ‘place of rest’.

To keep up to date with news from EOP and GRI please visit their facebook pages, links can be found on EOP’s project page.

Picture of Nkala © EOP.

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