Indian Flooding Update - Breakfast Baby Elephant Style.
This morning we got up early to head to the WTI/IFAW Center for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC) where we watched the formula being prepared for two baby elephants and then had the great opportunity to observe the feedings. There are currently four orphaned elephants at the center but only the two youngest still get milk. Of course, the older ones who are no more than three years old get very jealous of the little ones. Just like with human babies elephants need to learn how to feed themselves and it is a whole lot easier to be handed a bottle than to try to grab food with your trunk and get the food into your mouth! Like the older ones trying to steal milk the littlest one kept trying to take grass from the older elephants' mouths. This would be appropriate with elders in the wild but given the close proximity of their age and perhaps the fact that they are an artificial herd (a group of elephants who are not related) the older ones aren't yet ready to accept the baby's thievery.
The youngest elephant is only about six months old and was rescued during this year's floods. It's terrific to see him healthy and well and fast on his way to rehabilitation and release. Hopefully the two older ones will be released in Manas later this year joining the first ever released elephants in India!