The two-and-a-half minute YouTube clip, which was filmed in South Africa’s Kruger National Park, shows a family of elephants – a mother, a baby, and an older sister – attempting to climb a steep slope. The baby struggles to do so, even with the help of her mom and sister.
The calf’s mother can be seen gently pushing her baby up the hill and sweeping nearby branches to one side, so that her route will be made a little easier. The sister elephant also tries her best to encourage her.
But when the calf continues to struggle, her mother decides that the best solution would be to lead her toward an easier path a short distance away. The baby’s obvious excitement as she runs after her is a wonderful thing to witness!
Susan Nel, who filmed the video, observed that the baby calf had been born very recently, as it “still (had) the umbilical cord attached.” With such a supportive family around her, she is sure to lead the kind of richly satisfying life that all elephants deserve – but one that captive elephants sadly do not get to experience.
Image source: Erin Kilby/Flickr