Elephants in Chada

By Gabriel Mushi, Guide - Chada Katavi

 

Elephants are very intelligent animals.  They feed on a variety of plant matter, from flowers, leaves and fruits to pods and even bark.  They use their tusks to debark trees, then peel off strips and chew them.

 

Recently, while on an evening game drive with my guests, we came across a male elephant, about thirty years old, feeding under an acacia tree.  He was picking up seed pods from the ground, but when he had finished them all, he started shaking the tree.  Lifting his trunk and aligning it up the trunk of the tree, with his tusks on either side, he started pushing hard to shake the acacia pods down.

 

After that, he continued picking up the pods and eating them, grasping them one by one with the tip of his trunk and lifting them into his mouth.  After making sure there were none remaining underneath the tree, he moved on and kept on pushing on other acacia trees to get more pods that were out of his reach.

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