nubbsgalore: photos by gerry ellis from the david sheldrick wildlife trust, a nursery and orphanage for elephants in kenya’s tsavo east national park. here, fifty five keepers are charged with being around the clock parents to an elephant. the elephants, however, are the ones who chose their caretakers; it is the keepers who must ingratiate themselves to the elephants and earn their trust.
when elephants first arrive at the orphanage they are often traumatized from having witnessed the slaughter of their mothers and family by poachers. grieving can last several months, and they often lose the will to live. but as dame daphne sheldrick, founder of the orphanage, explains, a caretaker is charged with “persuading an elephant to live when it wants to die.”
approximately 35,000 elephants are killed by humans every year. with an estimated 350,000 elephants left in the whole continent of africa, they will be gone in the wild within ten years.
cbc’s the nature of things did a program on the elephants and their caretakers. you can foster an elephant with the david sheldrick wildlife trust online here. for more on the emotional lives of elephants, as well as the david sheldrick wildlife trust and other human efforts to save them, check out these posts
That was super nice of them.
And now I’m mad that nobody told us we were given cows. Cause that’s really f*cking nice and nobody mentioned it at all.
American media tends to disregard that anyone donates to the US. And then Amurricans complain about money going abroad because “nobody helped the US in our disasters.”
Also, do you know how much a cow costs? O.O
It isn’t just a matter of how much a cow costs, its a matter of considering that Masai life is based around their cattle. Its their wealth, their food, and a significant part of their religion. Here’s a quote from Wikipedia:
“Traditional Maasai lifestyle centres around their cattle which constitute their primary source of food. The measure of a man’s wealth is in terms of cattle and children. A herd of 50 cattle is respectable, and the more children the better. A man who has plenty of one but not the other is considered to be poor. A Maasai religious belief relates that God gave them all the cattle on earth, leading to the belief that rustling cattle from other tribes is a matter of taking back what is rightfully theirs, a practice that has become much less common.”
So its not just “they gave us 14 cows”, its that they gave us something that is very important and significant to them, it is more than just a kind gesture that definitely deserves to be known and its a genuine shame that more people don’t know about it.