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Video Moment : “Baby Elephant’s First Water” from The Long Walk Home BBC Earth Part 1

“Traversing the elephant highways of the Kalahari Desert is thirsty work, especially for this hour-old elephant calf on his first ever trip to water” Watch as a newborn elephant instinctively follows his elephant herd and elephant mama to discover a wonderland of water holes, his first discovery of them. And not without taking a tumble or two along the way. Baby elephant’s first trip to the mud puddle! The following is transcribed from Baby Elephant’s First Water Trip | The Long Walk Home | BBC Earth.


(elephant herd walking across the desert single file)  

“It is up to the Matriarchs like Bontle* to lead their families to distant scattered sources of food and water. Even in the so-called wet season the Kalahari remains harsh and unforgiving. The desert pans are dotted far and wide across the landscape linked by the web of elephant highways.”

(camera pans to show Mike and a ranger observing the elephants, through field glasses, in the water hole near their all terrain vehicle)

“Time and time again Mike witnesses their remarkable ability as Matriarchs choose a route which bypasses empty water holes but which leads, unfailingly, to full ones.”


(camera pans closely behind ranger with Mike pointing to the approaching herd of elephants)

“Didn’t we…” unintelligible

Ranger: “Yeah”

Narrator: “Every small pool is a lifeline.”

Mike: “Look how they are…” unintelligible

Ranger: “Yeah”


(elephants are heard rumbling and splashing loudly as they walk through the water)

(baby elephant takes a tumble, head first, as he struggles to keep up with his elephant family making their way toward the water hole. Mama elephant’s trunk is seen, reassuring him, after he righted himself and found his footing, though his little legs were a bit wobbly, once again.)

“This little elephant is only a few hours old. His mother would have given birth in the middle of the desert so he may already have walked many kilometers to reach here. It is the first water he has ever seen.”

(baby elephant tumbles again at water’s edge)

“The stop at this pool will give him a day or two he needs to find his feet.” 

(elephant herd splashes happily in the water hole)

“He is already socializing with members of other herds and even the great old bulls who come here.”

(elephants rumble while watching over the new little calf protectively)

“Mike believes that the little calf won’t forget this experience, that the memory of this water hole is now embedded in the youngster’s mind. But once this water is gone the tiny calf has no option but to follow his family for many kilometers to the next path.”

 (camera pans back to Mike and the ranger observing the elephant family leaving the water hole)


Watch BBC Earth YouTube video: “Baby Elephant’s First Water Trip

See also:  Video Moment : Elephants Under Threat of A Cull  from  The Long Walk Home  BBC Earth  Part 2


Image: CC Flicker by youngrobv : Kalahari Desert similar newborn African elephant protectively near mama elephant

*One elephant is called Bontle meaning Beauty (of African origin)  


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Image: CC Flicker by youngrobv, Kalahari Desert similar newborn African elephant stands near mama elephant




















































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