Pocha and Guillermina are moving forward in their relationships with the other girls at their own paces. Each day, we keep the gates to Yard 4 – where Bambi, Mara, Maia, and Rana spend their time – open to them, in case they feel up to visiting their new friends or the others want to join them closer to the barn.
The girls are intermingling, but it is important that Pocha and Guillermina have the opportunity to choose when, where, and how long they want to spend time with others. They are building relationships organically, and at a natural pace. There are moments when Guille may get overwhelmed, and she can manage her emotions in the moment – but afterwards she may have trouble processing an encounter or an event, which causes her to walk in circles (which is an example of stereotyping – something she often did in Mendoza). Both ladies have already come so far in such a short period of time that there’s no reason for us to push them to go farther than they choose to on their own.
This video highlights some of the interactions Pocha and Guillermina have had with other elephants: Mara being lovely and gentle with her touches, some soft and light snacking with Maia, and an exuberant Bambi doing her best to contain her excitement.