Today one of our lionesses was found dead on the reserve. She was heavily pregnant and we can only presume that there were complications with the labour which caused her untimely death. She was around 8 years old and was the mother of some of the other young lions on the reserve. We are all extremely sad about her death but have to accept that nature takes its own course.
But where there is death there is new life and on a positive note our newly born elephant calf seems to be doing very well within the breeding herd. He is now 11 days old. We are having the opportunity to see him more and more as he occasionally emerges from the group. Infancy is a special and interesting time for all animals. A new-born elephant enters the world at an amazing weight of between 77 and 113 kg, with a height of about 91 cm tall. They can consume up to 12 litres of milk a day. For the first three months a young calf’s food intake is typically provided only by the mother. At the age of 2 years the young elephant will feed independently but milk remains an important part of the diet. Elephants are only fully weaned between 5 and 6 years old.
We are also having more sightings of the newest addition to our white rhino population who is now around 3 months old.