Napasha is one of the 15 orphan baby elephants rescued by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT), whose names adorn our Elephant London Dry Gin miniature bottles. The Maasai herdsman came across the 6 months old Napasha quite by accident as he was lying down, and at first thought that the baby elephant was dead. However, upon closer inspection he discovered that, in fact, the calf was still alive and appeared to be reasonably well.
The herdsman with the Ranch team captured Napasha and got her back to their base, where he took some water and was offered a selection of cut greens throughout the night. First thing next morning, they drove Napasha to Nairobi, arriving at the DSWT’s orphanage at midday, after a 7 hour drive and 24 hours after the herdsman had found him.
Upon arrival, Napasha hungrily downed a bottle of milk and promptly fell asleep in the stable which had been made ready for him. The vet came to administer the usual prophylactic antibiotic injection, (which the elephant, still in a state of exhaustion barely noticed). This had to be a daily occurrence for the next 3 days to safeguard against diseases brought on by stress, both physical and psychological.
By 5:15pm that evening the resident nursery inmates were on their way back for the introductions. The keepers gently tried to wake Napasha, but he would only open his eyes. However, when the other orphan elephants arrived, he instantly came to life, and immediately walked outside to join them, greeted with excitement and joy by all!
Other elephants including Tomboi seemed delighted to have another boy in the fold and tiny Sunyei was beside herself with joy and excitement. Olmalo and Wendi, at first, were a bit unsure about the arrival of a larger stranger and tended to be stand-offish, but by the next morning, Napasha was out with all the nursery inmates and he was very much now part of the entire family!
Napasha was very obviously relieved and happy to be loved again, albeit by some strange two legged “animals” and 5 miniatures of his own species!
Photo credit and text: David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust