When Scott and Kat are at the house in the evenings, they often hear a bit of noise coming from the habitat. Sometimes it can be rumbling or bellowing or trumpeting. Generally they make the decision on whether to go down to check on the elephants based on the energy surrounding the sounds. There is not a definitive rule; they’ve just learned a bit about what kinds of sounds signal trouble and what sounds are just general playfulness or ordinary elephant noises. It really just comes down to a feeling.
Occasionally, one of the elephants gets stuck on one side of a fence, separated from the others. Though elephants are quite smart, sometimes they get caught up in excitement and seem to forget that there are other gates open and they can walk just a short distance away to get where they need to go.
One night, there was quite a bit of vocalizing coming from down the hill and, since neither Kat nor Scott had been in the habitat that afternoon, they double checked the cameras and only saw Bambi and Rana – but no Mara. This isn’t necessarily unusual because Bambi and Rana often lose track of Mara. Still, Scott decided to check to make sure there were no problems. When he arrived down the hill he found all three huddled together, deep in the bushes. Wanting to make sure things were truly good, he called out and asked, “Is everything okay?” and Mara immediately responded with one of her little squeaks. Clearly all three were fine, and they decided to get a bit silly – trumpeting and rumbling and making lots of noise. And so back to dinner Scott and Kat went, likely getting a bit more sleep than the girls, who seemed primed for a lively evening gathering.
Photo of Rana, Bambi, and Mara