BREAKING NEWS: Sad end to baby Ellie’s battle for survival

Baby Ellie at Thula Thula Private Game Reserve

Thula Thula’s prized baby elephant has sadly lost a 5-month battle for survival following a rapid deterioration of his condition over the last week.

Abandoned by his herd in Hluhluwe’s Bonamanzi Game Reserve and suffering from a large umbilical abscess and septicaemia, the two-week-old calf was brought to the Thula Thula Private Game Reserve near Empangeni in August, fighting to survive.

Against the odds, rehabilitation and crisis response expert at the reserve, Karen Trendler, and a dedicated team battled intensively round the clock to give the young elephant, formally named ‘Unbuntu; and nicknamed ‘Ellie’,  the best possible chance of survival.

Up until a week ago his caretakers were breathing a sigh of relief, thinking he might finally pull through.

Sadly, his health suddenly took a turn for the worst last Wednesday. It was later discovered the pockets of septicaemia had spread further in his body, and he displayed all the symptoms of septic shock.

He died at 11.30pm on Tuesday night.

Officials at Thula Thula released the news of his death on Facebook today, and their page has since been inundated by condolences from Zululanders.


Fond memories of Ellie and his canine companion, Duma:

Tameem Cajee

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