It has only been a few days into the new year and we already have the first animal incident. SkyVet team has reported that they have been busy responding to the Mara after a baby elephant calf was sighted with a horrendous snare wound on its hind leg.(WARNING GRAPHIC PICTURES)
1920’s Cottars camp scouts met the team who flew in early afternoon, and drove them to the Olderekesi Wildlife Conservancy where the snared baby elephant and mother were being monitored in a herd of approximately 12 elephants.
Fred Oring’a, a KWS Vet working with SkyVets on this case, promptly prepared two darts, one for the mum who had a spear wound injury to her back and one for her stricken baby. Treatment of the calf was carefully done and a cable snare cut away having penetrated deep into the flesh of the left hind leg, almost reaching the bone.
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It is hard to imagine the unspeakable agony this must have inflicted and snares, made from cable in this case, but wire or nylon too, are undoubtedly the crudest and cruellest form of poaching, causing a slow agonising death, indiscriminately ensnaring their prey, as undoubtedly when this snare was laid by poachers it was not intended for a baby elephant.
Warning Graphic Images
Once the snare was removed the wound was cleaned and treated before the team rushed to attend to the spear injury on the mother’s back, which thankfully, while deep, did not appear too bad. They were both revived just as daylight faded and were able to regroup back with their herd before night fell as the herd waited patiently close by. It was as if they knew help had come.
The infant’s wound was so severe that the prognosis for this calf to heal in a wild situation remains guarded, and a follow up veterinary treatment will take place in a couple of weeks.