Resilient Calf: An Inspiring Tale of Endurance and Healing

Resilient Calf: An Inspiring Tale of Endurance and Healing

In the Mara, a heartwarming story unfolded as two elephants were rescued in a single day. The day began with a small calf in desperate need of help, his face cut by a snare. Hours later, a majestic bull, likely injured by a spear, was also saved.

On December 18th, we were alerted to two situations in the Mara that required urgent attention. Without hesitation, we called upon Sky Vets – our specialized initiative focused on providing quick medical care to wildlife in critical situations or remote locations. Dr. Poghon, a seasoned KWS veterinarian with prior experience in our Mobile Vet Units, was swiftly dispatched from Nairobi to the Mara. Within no time, he and his team were prepared to spring into action.

Initially, the focus was on the calf and his distressing situation. The sight of the wire snare cutting into his mouth, jaw, and behind his ear shocked everyone present. Although the injury was not fatal yet, it was evident that it would soon hinder his ability to eat. The calf must have been experiencing unbearable pain.

Caring for a milk-reliant calf adds another level of difficulty, as it often involves having to sedate the mother as well. This was the situation during this particular procedure. Dr. Poghon tranquilized the mother without any issues, allowing the operation to proceed smoothly.

The young calf presented a new challenge once his mother moved away, as he immediately joined the rest of the herd. This poignant demonstration of elephant love and loyalty made tranquilizing him a difficult task, but thankfully, Dr. Poghon’s extensive field experience helped him succeed in administering the anesthesia.

The team acted quickly, removing the wire trap and treating the wound that encircled the animal’s head. If left unnoticed, the injury could have been fatal. With prompt care, Dr. Poghon is hopeful that the little creature will heal completely.

The young calf was separated from his mother by about 250 meters. The rescue team quickly loaded him into a vehicle and drove him back to her, ensuring they could wake up side by side. The calf took the initiative to nudge his mother, who woke up soon after and embraced her precious baby. They then walked off together to join their herd, happily reunited.

Following their success with a tiny patient, the team embarked on a larger challenge. Their next task was to treat a majestic bull located near the edge of the Mara Triangle. With the help of rangers and staff from the Mara Conservancy and Anne K. Taylor Fund, the team trekked through a dense forested valley to reach the massive animal in need of medical attention.

As the day grew darker, the procedure proceeded smoothly. The bull had suffered two deep wounds, one on his left leg and the other on his right side, possibly caused by spears. After cleaning and treating the wounds, the team gave him necessary medications for a speedy recovery. Dr. Poghon is optimistic about his full recovery. Soon enough, the bull was up and about, ready to reunite with his companions.

Our organization established six Mobile Vet Units and Sky Vets with the goal of rescuing various animals and preserving their natural families. The successful treatments of these two individuals exemplify our dedication to this mission. We are deeply thankful to our generous supporters who enable us to carry out these critical operations. Additionally, we extend our gratitude to our partners in the Mara, including the Mara Conservancy, Mara Elephant Project, and Anne K. Taylor Fund, for their assistance in granting a second chance to both the young animal and the adult bull.

AQ

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