If you are looking for an elephant who knows how to entertain herself, then Maia is your girl. While she is spending more time with the other ladies than before, she still enjoys solo walks through some of the wooded areas of the habitat. And, when she is in the right mood, she can make plenty of noise.
The backside of the larger yards have areas that are less frequented than others, which means they are filled with plenty of brush and vines and, of course, trees. And Maia really likes to break a tree limb. Invariably, she waits until things get nice and quiet and dark in the habitat – and we hear a CRACK echoing all the way back to the house. She rarely takes down full larger trees, but she can handle a significant branch without too much effort. There are low branches that other animals use for homes or defense systems, but Maia enjoys trying for the higher limbs that she can sometimes just reach.
Maia’s modifications generally don’t do much to the woods, but she has been known to try her hand (or rather, “trunk”) at taking down limbs and trees of all sizes. Of course, part of the beauty of sanctuary is that these spaces exist where elephants like Maia can do such natural things and it won’t harm their larger surroundings. The habitat is still very beautiful and intact.
As we said, Maia is the elephant that we are used to hearing make noises like this in the late hours of the night. But a few days ago we heard all sorts of sounds of tree limbs popping and limbs breaking, and there was only one elephant in that area who could possibly be making such a racket: Lady. We are always so charmed when Lady does silly things that we might expect only from the others. But that night, from the sounds of things, Lady was having a grand time.
Photo: Maia at sunset, perhaps preparing for her next nighttime adventure