Now that Pocha and Guillermina have had interactions with Lady and experienced first touches with Maia, we were curious as to how they would react to meeting Bambi, Mara, and Rana – and vice versa. The opportunity presented itself when the three ladies were in Yard 4, neighboring Yard 3, where Pocha and Guillermina were spending time.
We can’t be sure which group of girls saw the others first, but Pocha and Guillermina quickly came back to the barn after that first glimpse. The barn seems to be a safe space for them, so it makes sense that they’d want to touch base there and settle for a few minutes after a moment of excitement. That didn’t last long, though, as both went running back out toward the fence separating the two yards. There was a lot of rumbling, which sent Mara into the bushes for a while; she seemed to be the least excited about the interaction, though she did come back to greet them more than once. There was a bit of: elephants moving toward each other, away from the fence, and back again.
After some tentative moves forward from their side, Rana and Bambi approached Pocha and Guillermina directly. It seems that Bambi was the first of the “Powerpuff Girls” to walk over and touch the other two, in a way that was very sweet and tender. Pocha presented the side of her body to the others, which is a passive form of introduction. She seemed to be leading the way and encouraging Guillermina to join the interactions. All-in-all, there was a nice mix of all the elements of social interaction: touching, smelling, different individuals showing submissive behaviors, greeting each other from the side, and from head on. No one was too invasive.
The group of three didn’t always seem to know what to make of Guille’s vocalizations; Pocha was largely quiet during the series of interactions, except for a few quiet rumbles. At one point, after Guillermina did some talking, Bambi and Mara went racing back into the bushes where THEY started chatting – which caused Pocha and Guillermina to go back to the barn for their moment of reprieve from the excitement. The interactions had plenty of high energy moments which, though positive, still bordered on being a bit overwhelming at times. After decades of confinement, stepping away from so much activity helped keep them from being overstimulated.
Eventually, the girls emerged from the bushes and went back to the fence for more physical interaction. Rana kept her signature calm, easy presence, encouraging Mara to stay using some soft rumbles, while also engaging with Guille’s vocalizations with her deep rumbles. It was fascinating to see how Pocha was the first to encourage the interactions with the three girls, but then stepped back a bit after Guillermina became more relaxed with the others. For the first time with all of their new experiences, Guillermina seemed to be more comfortable staying close for longer periods, while Pocha stepped away. Or, maybe this was a case of “mom knows best,” with Pocha seeing an opportunity to encourage her daughter to step bravely into relationships of her own, as a unique and separate individual.
Throughout all of this, Maia was farther down in Yard 4 by the pond. Who knows – she may have been satisfied with her initial introduction or trying to give everyone their space for these first interactions. Lady was also close by, near the pond in Yard 5. She was very light and curious, but also kept her distance and later on walked deeper into the yard.
In this video, you can see Pocha arriving at the fence line first, followed by Guillermina. Bambi approaches the fence, as Mara stays farther back. Bambi and Guille approach one another and Rana stands behind Bambi. Pocha eventually walks up to the front and stands sideways toward Bambi. In the background you can see Mara gently touching Guillermina. Through all of this, the guiding, calming spirit of Rana was just a step away to the right of the camera.