While Mara is spending some time without Rana in Yard 4, she isn’t alone. Lady has continued to spend her time in Yard 4 without showing interest in the barn or other yards.
Mara is pretty active, and the other day, while headed to the trough on one of her “adventure days,” she started walking toward Lady as if to greet her. Lady let her take a few steps, but when Mara crossed that invisible boundary, Lady turned and took a couple of steps away. Mara then stopped, realizing she crossed the line, and headed back towards the trough. Lady then returned to finish the remnants of her breakfast.
In general, Lady seems a little less settled with Mara there by herself than when Mara and Rana are there together. We know Mara approached Lady in the above instance, but we also clearly saw that Mara respected Lady’s boundaries when Lady walked away. Even though Lady remains a bit more attentive when Mara is without Rana, she still chooses to be in Mara’s vicinity frequently. Lady will often face and smell in Mara’s direction, allowing her to easily observe. Lady could walk away or head to the barn or many other areas in Yard 4 to have her own space, but she doesn’t.
On days that Mara isn’t in Yard 4, Lady seems a bit lighter and more rumbly. We aren’t sure if it’s because she is more relaxed or because she gets unlimited pond time without another elephant wanting to take turns splashing.
Even if Mara’s presence means Lady is a little more guarded, it’s good to see her choosing to be social and challenge herself by spending time around other elephants in different situations.
Photo of Lady.