Elephant of the Week or Elephants to Adopt / Foster / Sponsor

DOLDOL: Elephant of the Week at The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust: Too Cute: Part 1


Name Origin/Meaning: Doldol, named for the community of Dol Dol in Laikipia, the location tiny elephant was found

Date of Birth: approx. 19 November 2021, a Friday*

*SWT orphaned elephants are assigned approximate birth dates as there is no way of knowing the actual day they were born. 


Age When Rescued: zero months, not long after her birth

Current Age: nineteen months


Image: Doldol rescued elephant at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust SWT from CC Meet Doldol (9)


Gender: Female

Where Now: Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (1) Kaluku Neonate Unit,  Africa  (‘…the 5,000 acres where Kaluku is situated border Tsavo East National Park, with the Athi and Mtito rivers acting as natural boundaries to the Park…) (7)

Foster /Adopt This Sweet Elephant (2) copy & paste link from Sources below


Too Cute For Too Many Photos see DolDol’s photo gallery (3)



Too Cute For Photos!      Credit: public domain, Baby Elephant Drawing



Location of Rescue: “On the edge of the northern frontier of the Laikipia Plateau” see area on Rescue map (4)  

Baby elephant’s Rescue Video: Doldol’s Rescue (9)

Elephant Became Orphaned Because of: “Unknown” 


Situation Surrounding Orphaned Elephant’s Discovery: Doldol was rescued in a “part of Kenya that gets freezing cold at night, buffeted by gusts of alpine air that routinely swoop down from Mount Kenya.” 

Fortunately the tiny elephant “was discovered in the heart of community land” and wasn’t left exposed to the elements for too long. A villager watched over the little calf inside his boma, caring for her by “keeping her warm and protected” throughout the night. And no doubt an elephant angel kept her safe and warm until that thoughtful human came along.

Insights into Orphan’s Elephant Herd: Speculation is Doldol’s mother abandoned her newborn after “having been disturbed during birth … almost certainly a premature birth.” Sadly, Doldol’s elephant family moved on leaving the calf vulnerable and alone. 


Condition of Orphaned Elephant When Rescued: The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (SWT)/KWS Mount Kenya Mobile Veterinary Unit team were “shocked” at just how tiny little Doldol appeared, “barely hitting knee high”. And what is worse is that they knew the newborn had yet to receive the vital colostrum from her mother’s milk (a superfood for baby elephants). The rescuers were even doubting that the frail orphan would survive the flight.

Lifesaving Measures Taken: Doldol was so vulnerable the rescue team knew that time was not on their side. They immediately wrapped the baby elephant in multiple blankets to swaddle and warm her. They needed to transport their charge to the elephant orphanage as quickly as possible in order for her to receive the necessary care and nutrients a premie elephant needs to survive. 

Transported Via: helicopter from village rescue site & Rescue Plane to the SWT Kaluku Neonate Nursery.

For Complete Story see Doldol’s Orphan Profile: (3)


Upon Arrival at the SWT Nursery: Doldol was assigned not only a special Keeper in Mishak but a special stable as well. The stable had once housed (The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust) orphans Bondeni, Kindani, and Kinyei and was in close proximity to Angela’s (the late Daphne Sheldrick’s daughter) and her husband, Robert’s (Carr-Hartley) Tsavo house (the better for all to keep watch over their new neonate charge).

Once settled in Doldol drank in all the attention she was receiving. She even insisted, through loud trumpets, that Mishak’s bedroll be placed not “perched above her stable’ (6) but close by the little elephant’s side. She got her way for a little while. A routine soon developed between Keeper and his charge with long daily walks along the Athi River and frequent mud baths as Mishak coated her body from head to toe to Doldol’s delight!


Image: Keeper Mishak with Doldol nudging him for attention… rescued elephant at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust SWT from CC Meet Doldol (9)




To be continued: DOLDOL: Elephant of the Week at The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust: Too Cute: Part 2




Note: All quotes in this 2 part article are from baby elephant Doldol’s orphan profile (3) unless otherwise stated. 


Images: Doldol rescued elephant at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust SWT from CC Meet Doldol (9)



(1) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/ 

(2) ADOPT DOLDOL https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/orphans?q%5Bspecies.slug%5D=&q%5Bage%5D=&q%5Bgender%5D=&q%5Brescued.environ%5D=&q%5Blocation.slug


(3) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/orphans/doldol 

(4) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/projects/orphans/rescue-map

(5) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/news/updates/rescue-of-doldol

(6) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/news/updates/doldol-update

(7) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/news/updates/kaluku-our-field-headquarters 

(8) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/keepers-diaries/search?q%5Bentry.dated_year%5D=&q%5Bentry.dated_month%5D=&q%5Bupdate_orphans%5D%5B%5D=Doldol&q%5Bterm%5D=#filters

(9) https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=doldol+sheldrick+wildlife+trust+Creative+Commons

(10) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/orphans 

(11) https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/faqs



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Image: Doldol rescued elephant at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust SWT from CC Meet Doldol (9)

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