To learn a bit more about me and other elephants, do take a look at the Five Fun Facts below. There’s a word search puzzle for you too! And there’s a charming colouring sheet, showing Zeb, Oki, and me enjoying tea and cakes in a little place called Stanley’s Terrace.
“Mhoro shamwari”, dear children. My name is Elimu and I am an African elephant. I took my friends Zeb and Oki on an exciting trip around Zimbabwe, including my home, Victoria Falls National Park.
Fun facts about Elimu and elephants:
- Elimu’s impressive ears show that he is an African elephant! The other type of elephant is the Asian elephant, which has smaller ears, as well as smoother skin and bumps on its head.
- One of the most interesting features of elephants is their very long trunk. They use their trunk to breathe, smell, pick up food and drink, and to make sounds! Their beautiful tusks are also very useful, for clearing a pathway through thick forest and digging for water during the dry season.
- Groups of elephants, known as “herds”, tend to consist of either all males (“bulls”) or all females (“cows”). In both herds, the eldest elephant is in charge. The eldest bull makes sure the younger bulls behave themselves! Elimu remembers when he was younger and a bit wild. He wanted to join a gang, but the herd leader persuaded him to stay, and today Elimu is glad he did so.
- Elephants tend to breed during the wet season and the pregnancy lasts for about two years! Newborn baby elephants, called calves, are cared for only by their mother during the first few days of life, but after that time other cows look after them too.
- The whole herd protects its young by making sure the calves are in the centre of the group when a predator is close. Adult elephants are too big for carnivores to hunt, but the little ones must be guarded against attacks from lion, hyena, and wild dog.