‣ Male ‣ Date of birth: August 2019‣ Name derivative: “Black Rhino” due to his fighting nature, and after the organisation who helped with his rescue.‣ Place of discovery : South Luangwa National Park
In South Luangwa National Park staff from Lion Camp reported a severely injured, lame elephant with a suckling calf. They monitored the elephant until the Department of National Parks & Wildlife and Conservation South Luangwa teams could assess her. They found she had a fatal gunshot wound, almost certainly inflicted by ivory poachers. She was in very poor condition, with her milk already starting to dry up, and would not survive. The calf was at her side, trying to suckle frequently in order to get the nutrition he desperately needed.
A heart rendering decision had to be made, to euthanise her and save the calf. After waking from sedatives, the young calf quickly got to his feet, stretched and started running around the enclosure.
He was clearly distressed and disoriented. Having losthis mother, he charged the fence and took some time tocalm. His reaction was unsurprising, considering theheartbreak and trauma he had just been through. As amilk–dependant youngster he would have not strayedfar from his mother’s side throughout his life and thebond between mother and calf is incredibly intense andfilled with emotion, much like our own.
After some time, having been provided with food, waterand constant company he began to settle. He waswilling to accept a bottle (of electrolytes and later milk)within 24 hours of his rescue, but he did not relaxenough to sleep for over 3 days. This little elephant is afighter for sure.
Once he had settled and was drinking well, plans weremade to transport him to the Elephant Nursery wherehe would be united with other elephants,Chipembele faces a challenging journey to recover fromthe trauma he experienced, to give him a chance of alife back in the wild where he belongs.
Sign up for SPN monthly newsletter so you can stay up-to-date on reports from the field and learn more about the SPN!