When a baby elephant was spotted with a poacher’s snare around its leg in Thuma Forest Reserve last week it was all systems go to mobilise the troops.
Scouts from Wildlife Action Group Malawi (WAG) patrol 24/7 to protect the elephants of Thuma Forest Reserve and they called in our Wildlife Emergency Response Unit who in turn enlisted the help of Derek Macpherson to work with our vet Amanda (long distance since she is out of the country) to help the WAG team. Here’s an excerpt from their account:
“WAG scouts tracked the elephant family for two days and on the afternoon of the 31st, with the help of WERU and Derek, managed to have him darted and removed the snare. The wound caused by the snare on the baby elephant’s right front leg was very bad but not yet down to the bone. While the baby’s elephant family stood by, kept at a safe distance by noise and a few gun shots into the air, the wound was cleaned, and long acting antibiotics were administered, followed by the antidote to the tranquilizer. Within 90 seconds little Thomas lifted his head and rumbled for his family to come. His mother and other members of his family rushed to him. He stood up slowly, and they walked off together into the forest. WAG scouts have sighted the family since, and Thomas is looking stronger and seems to be healing well.
See the full account with photos here