Rana’s Growth: Part II

Rana and Mara

Maia has been visibly trying to temper her “bulldozer” side around Rana and Mara. It seems like she is making genuine overtures for a deeper relationship. We’ve talked about this growth from Maia’s standpoint, but not from Rana’s. Remarkably, Rana has responded to Maia with a welcoming grace. (This is Part II of yesterday’s post).

Rana is still overjoyed by and seemingly attached to her new best friend, Mara. She loves Mara, and that is apparent to everyone. When Maia started to try a little harder, it would’ve been easy for Rana to passively ignore her and continue to focus on her relationship with Mara. Yet, Rana hasn’t. Rana not only responds, but she will step away from Mara to be with Maia.

Rana has been incredibly receptive to Maia’s changing behaviors. By these positive responses, she is reinforcing Maia’s attempts, which helps Maia realize good things happen when she tones down herself and acts on the needs of others. Rana is helping to show her that. It’s beautiful for them, and for Maia’s growth. It shows Rana’s understanding of what it means to be a herd member and part of something larger than herself. These changes are allowing all three of them to grow together.

Since her arrival, Rana often shows some sort of response when Maia has popped up. It varies – she will take a few steps away, or trumpet, or get big eyes. As Maia has begun tempering her energy, that response has stopped. We had recently finished doing Rana and Mara’s treatment when we saw Maia approaching where the two were quietly eating hay. When Maia walked over, Mara took a few steps away as Maia and Rana greeted each other. With Mara around 10-15 yards (10 meters) away, Maia and Rana stayed side by side for quite a while. Their bellies were touching, and their ears were flapping.

They were both picking at hay, and eventually started leaning into each other, half napping. It was a moment just between Maia and Rana, and it seemed incredibly sweet. It was a behavior that we don’t remember seeing between the two of them. Mara stayed close, but also remained a respectful distance. Everything was relaxed and gentle. To know that Rana has a new exciting vocal friend that always wants to be near her, but is still taking time to build her relationship with Maia, is incredible. Now that Maia is looking for increased closeness, Rana seems more than willing to give it.

Of course, the new Maia is still Maia, and she was the one who eventually walked away from the interaction. Rana’s receptiveness to Maia is also encouraging Mara to give Maia more of a chance. We don’t know what will happen next, or how dynamics will continue to evolve. With this level of support from Rana, anything is possible.

(Photo of Rana, with Mara in the background).

August 8, 2020


NOTE:  We would like you to know that we read each and every submitted Comment.  The blog doesn’t afford us the ability to “Like” them, but please know how grateful we are for your compassion, kindness, your thoughts, your humor, and the time you take to share those with us.  From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for being on this journey with us. ❤️


  1. REPLY
    Jillyp says

    It is so wonderful to hear your thoughts on how the relationships between the girls are developing. They are amazing beings with such capacity for understanding, more than we will ever know probably. How sweet and gentle and understanding is Rana to positively reinforce Maia to welcome her in too. Thank you for all your amazing posts and giving us the chance to be part of ele life at Sanctuary Brazil ❤️?????

  2. REPLY
    Nancy Shaw says

    These postings bring me a much needed sense of calmness, hopefulness, a blessing and peaceful repose. Thank you so much and of course I wish the Elephants only the Best. Nancy

  3. REPLY
    Julia Mercedes Eden says

    It warms my heart to read how this trio are evolving but I can’t help but feel sad for Lady I pray that by her seeing this she too may join the Global Sanctuary Herd ?????

  4. REPLY
    Tammy says

    Thank you! Ever since I found the Sanctuary it has been such a wonderful learning experience for me also my entire family. I share the ups and downs the laughter and tears with them. They all know how special these Elephants are to me how deeply they have touched my heart especially when Ramba passed that was really tough but knowing how she hung on long enough to make it to the sanctuary her home her paradise and her final resting place gave me joy in that she at least got to experience true happiness friendship and so much love surrounding her thank you for allowing us that intimate connection with these beautiful gentle giants with those big gorgeous eyes flapping ears swinging tails and the cutest butts anywhere! I didn’t have the honor of knowing Guida or the others before her but from all that I have read I’ll feel like I really do know them each with their own personality just like people. Cant wait to see what’s happening next and who will be the newest family member to join the girls. You are all such special people with hearts of gold super role models proving you can make a huge impact on saving exploited abused animals one day at a time…..??????

  5. REPLY
    Bobi StaySee says

    This description is like viewing a clip, only with deeper understanding than even a clip would provide. The gift of observing the emergence of what we call a herd and sharing that with us is, again, priceless. Thank you so much for translating your observations.

  6. REPLY
    Pat Rath says

    The detailed posts you share about the girls brighten my days and make me wish I could be there in person! But your sharings are so detailed and personal it’s the next best thing! Thank you, thank you! FYI, I live in California and I am Jeanne Pettit Guy’s mom.,,She is the one who turned me on to what you folks do so wonderfully there in Brazil and I am so blessed that she did!

  7. REPLY
    Carol says

    Thank YOU! Your thoughtful posts give us access and insights into the girls, and Elephants in general, that otherwise we’d never get. I wish every person involved in keeping these magnificent creatures enslaved would read your posts. I’m positive just reading them would change hearts and minds. Total respect for what you are doing.

  8. REPLY
    Nishant Bhajaria says

    I just love that these elephants are getting so much love and support

  9. REPLY
    Julie says

    I bow down to Miss Rana, our beautiful, evolved, big-hearted wonder-girl. Is she emerging as our philosopher king (queen)?

  10. REPLY
    Wim says

    Loved the part 1 of yesterday masterclass in Elephants sentient dominance above human. Now think l love part two even more including your kind p.s.
    It seems past events and present grow process are certainly connected. Seen from my perspective all girls are surrounded by Buddha’s white Elephant they share and care in almost transcendental levels.
    Btw it really feels like we’re forming a Circle of Life together not hampered by any distance.

  11. REPLY
    Paula says

    Nosotros les agradecemos a ustedes por compartir este viaje con nosotros y por regalarnos el privilegio de formar parte de la vida de las damas, cada día.
    Sus publicaciones son tan hermosas, sus palabras son alimento para nuestros corazones! Yo también comparto sus publicaciones con mi familia, todas las noches, leo la publicación del día a mi esposo & hijos, se ha hecho una costumbre en casa desde que los conocí a ustedes gracias al traslado de Mara❤
    Solo quier que sepan, como siempre les digo, que los respeto, admiro y amo profundamente!
    Los acompañaré toda mi vida!
    Estoy segura que las chicas se acomodarán con el tiempo y ellas vivirán en manada, está en la naturaleza de ellas, en el instinto de los elefante vivir así!? Dios los bendiga!

  12. REPLY
    Joyce Etter says

    I am appreciating learning more about elephant behavior. It is wonderful that these girl’s actions are positive to each other. I can see why it takes time. So much damage can be done rushing things. Its amazing to me that elephants are so intelligent to be able to read the body language of the others and understand how to respond.

  13. REPLY
    Bernadette Andaloro says

    I am so happy that I stumbled across the Sanctuary website. I look forward to receiving your email every day to find out what the girls are up to next. They sound so incredibly intelligent and sweet. I am just so terribly upset by the suffering and death that these wonderful animals experience at the hand of humans. Thank you so much for all you do for them and for the joy that you bring to me by allowing me to share in it .

  14. REPLY
    Debbie Sides says

    Rana reminds me of Ronnie at TES. The tie that binds. Lovely to see this growth.

  15. REPLY
    Bo says

    When you share a common interest or a passion with others, you feel a connection, a bond, no matter how many miles or hours there is between people.

    Secretly I think we all feel like a ele-human herd 🙂

    Thanks again for all the effort to share all the stories and adventures, it is such a wonderful place to turn and go to, honestly thank you!
    Most of all the elephants say that, for loving and caring for them, unlimited 🙂

  16. REPLY
    Rosie P says

    I have to say thank you yet again for allowing us to take this journey with you, to learn about the girls’ characters and relationships with each other evolve. It’s intriguing , exciting, informative, heart warming, I can’t wait to hear what happens next.
    One day there will be many more elephants, Asian and African, enjoying a new free life around the habitat of ESB. Rana I can see as a calming influence in the herd…I would not have said that a year ago. She has blossomed, gentle in her approach to the others. I adore them all but I do have a deep part in my heart that oozes Rana. …and I don’t do favorites! Oh my!

  17. REPLY
    JoAnn Merriman Eaton says

    The insight you give us by sharing your thoughts and observations is such a wonderful experience. I got goosey bumps on my arms just to know Maia is being included by Rana. I just wonder if in Rana’s genes her mother was a matriarch, and after being able to live in a true habitat that the tendency is ever so slowly coming alive. I find myself wondering so often what their thoughts are as they experience this paradise at GSE.

  18. REPLY
    Bertica Valdes Suarez says

    I got so happy when I read that Rana and Maia were leaning into each other and falling asleep. Thank youuu for understanding so well what you are seeing. What wide depth there is to elephants!!

Post a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.