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African elephants are the largest living terrestrial animals, and are highly socialized and intelligent. This elephant was part of a large herd encountered in the Masai Mara area. Find out more about the herd in the extra shots and notes.
Savanna with adequate quantities of food (grass and browse) and water. Distribution: Eastern and Southern Africa.
This herd of about 20 was made of several females together with their young of various ages. Well hidden and protected at the center of the herd was the youngest calf (4th shot); its tusks not showing externally yet indicates that it is still suckling its mother. A large adult male, a “one-tusker”, was ending the convoy (5th shot). Mature males usually live in bachelor herds and join a female herd during the mating season. Elephants favour one tusk over the other, shortening it from constant wear. This may have led to premature loss for that guy. The group was found not the Masai Mara reserve proper but in the Siana Conservancy, about 20 km outside the Mara (read more about this conservancy at http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/729... ). The lack or destruction of migration corridors between these areas and the Masai Mara reserve can create conflicts with villagers due damage to crops and the danger of stampede, and it can happen that entire groups have to be moved back to the reserve.