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Kiasa is one of the three orphaned elephants, whose names adorn our Elephant Orange Cocoa Gin Miniatures. 15% of profits from these baby bottles go to our partner foundation Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (SWT) supporting their mission to rescue and rehabilitate orphaned elephants.
Whilst on a routine patrol flight, an SWT pilot noticed a tiny elephant calf being escorted by two big bull elephants. The pilot continued to scan the area for evidence of elephant herds but sighted no other elephants in the area. Only a few days prior the SWT aerial patrol had reported the sighting of a dead female who had succumbed to the effects of the severe drought not far from the sighting of the elephant calf.
Upon assessment of the situation by both Kenya Wildlife Service and the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust decided to initiate a rescue as the tiny calf would not be able to survive without her mother’s milk. With a repeat search to confirm that there were no other elephants in the area, the team gently separated the bulls from the baby. By doing this SWT team were able to capture her safely and wasted no time flying her to the Trust’s Nairobi Nursery. Once she had been given fluids, and even slept a little, she awoke to fellow orphan Maktao stationed in a stable next to her, offering her some much needed reassurance.
Though still grieving for her lost family, Kiasa was soon to accept her new human and orphan family. Kiasa was hooked on her Keepers, who were soon to see how with each day Kiasa was becoming more playful, but still remained utterly charming! This blossoming orphan has now graduated to the Umani Springs Reintegration Unit. She is surrounded by a smitten older orphan herd who are at her beck and call, in between all her mischievous antics! When she is ready to make her last step in her reintegration journey, Kiasa will return to the wild - but until then will remain in the care of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.
Text and photo credit: Sheldrick Wildlife Trust