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MaTrix was named in recognition of Trix Olivier, wife of Regional Ranger Louis Olivier who has supported her husband in his professional and private capacity for 31years. MaTrix’s left tusk is considerably longer then the right tusk, with reasonably thick ivory for a female tusker. This female has been sighted on numerous occasions. The first recording of her was by Steven Whitfield, section ranger at Tshokwane from the Bantam light winged airplane in 2007. Upon further investigation several entries were also received in the 2006 and 2007 Emerging Tuskers Competition and the female tusker had be marked to be kept track of. Given Steven’s positive sighting of her it was decided to accelerate the naming process. MaTrix was named in 2007 after a motivation was submitted by Kirsty Redman.
Trix Olivier was to some extent an obvious choice to have a female tusker named after. An icon on the northern region, she is well known and respected by all staff that have worked or had contact with he, and her dedication and commitment to the Kruger National Park speaks volumes. When investigating a possible traditional name for Trix for the naming process, most of the staff indicated that there is no known name, but that Gingirikani would well represent Trix as it is Tsonga meaning ‘Hardworker’ (given she is always “running/striding” while doing her job). Trix has had a colorful career in the Kruger National Park, from unofficial assistant ranger in the early days, to receptionist and finally her current position of Admin Officer at Phalaborwa for the regional offices.
Text: South African National Parks
Photo copyright: Steven Whitfield/Matthew Durrel