These days, you can see Maia evolving back into the spunky elephant she once was – perhaps just a bit wiser. She has become a regular part of the elephant herd, not always tentative and on the outside as she once was.
We often see her spending time with Pocha and Guillermina, sometimes in leadership mode, though Guillermina doesn’t always pay attention when others are attempting to take charge. That seemed to be the case one afternoon when she was leading Guille and Pocha in a line along the fence. Guillermina really wanted to walk ahead of Maia, but Maia indicated several times that there was to be no passing. Besides, because of the bushes around them, there really was no space to pass, unless Guille was going to bump into Maia.
Guillermina got impatient a couple of times, which caused Maia to turn around and give her the elephant equivalent of “knock it off.” Of course, Guillermina doesn’t take well to authority and went racing through the bushes anyway; Maia cut her off and did a loud vocalization, the likes of which we’d never heard before from her, then bumped Guille in the head as a warning. Guillermina took a step back and followed Maia for a bit longer, giving her some space for a few minutes before looking for another opportunity to pass.
Eventually, Guille got her way and found a small, open area and walked past Maia at a quick pace. Maia then slowed down and walked with Pocha at a more leisurely pace. Once again, Guillermina is showing her childlike side and beginning to test the patience of her elders. Nevertheless, she seems not to pay any mind and continues to play on in her own way.
Photo of Guille peeking out of the bushes