2011 Newborn Elephant Calf

Wed, 2011-06-15 13:21 by ssayialel
Freya on the left, her first born male Fabrice and Flickr on the right bunching together protecting the new born Newborn trying to suckle from allomother Flickr

I am proud to announce that we have finally recorded our first successful Elephant birth of 2011 after a stillbirth that was witnessed by Katito and Graeme in a previous post. Our records show the last birth dates back seven months ago. This high decline in birth rate correlates with the 2009 drought when few female elephants came into estrus. Elephant breeding patterns are mostly determined by the availability of food, and they may conceive in response to a good rainfall period, resulting in an increased birth number 21 – 23 months later.

Elephant birth may take place wherever a mother finds herself, but typically occurs in the company of other family members and most often at night. The newborn male is the latest addition to the FA family by Freya and we estimated the calf to be four days old. It is the second calf by the 23-years-old female with a birth interval of 6 years. Birth interval ranges from 2.9-9.1 years and is considerably shortened by the death of the previous calf.

The FA family now totals to 13 members, headed by Fenella, a 43 years old Matriarch. The presence of his mother and family, four years of lactation – if conditions are favorable – plus many more years of rearing and protection will determine the young calf's survival to adulthood.

Welcome Little One

Fri, 2011-06-24 18:59 by Spike

What a joyous moment! Thank you for taking this and posting a wondrous event.

Freya Calf

Thu, 2011-06-16 01:21 by Donna

What a little beauty he is, Soila. His ears are HUGE. Thank you for the posting.

Freya's New Calf

Wed, 2011-06-15 18:35 by cmoss

It's wonderful to see a baby elephant again. It's been so long. Thanks for the happy posting.

Great news, Soila

Wed, 2011-06-15 16:14 by Keith

...and very interesting that the calf was born in June. He would have been conceived in, when, August 2009? Wow! Hope there are many more.


Wed, 2011-06-15 15:05 by Shuger66

That is awesome to see, thank you for sharing this with us. I had no idea when I planned my trip to Amboseli in Sept, 2011 that I would likely be in the midst of an elephant baby boom. I sure hope that is so, I have 85 sleeps to go and then I'm on a jet plane...and I will be visiting your research center on my first day there. I'm so excited and I think about this every single day.


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