We were all excited at the thought of seeing – and touching – a baby elephant. As we arrived, this jolly little creature, with his long, thick eyelashes came trotting along behind his keeper and soul mate Bruce, his carer at Uganda Wildlife Education Centre in Entebbe.
These two have become inseparable. They even sleep together (in a house of course!)
I’d made the mistake of wearing open toed sandals for the day, so I was a bit wary of getting too close to him. In his enthusiasm to sniff everyone with his curly trunk, he trod on the toes of one of the teenage girls in our group – luckily she had trainers on. He may be a baby but he already weighs 153kg!
You can almost cuddle Charles, he’s so small. He’s a cute little thing – for now! A mere 100 to 120 kg when born, an elephant will weigh an incredible 2,000 to 3,000 kg when fully grown.
I worked in conservation in Uganda for 2 ½ years, written elephant reports, elephant stories and an elephant obituary but this was my first time to come up close with the famous Loxodonta Africana.
To visit Charles or donate milk to feed him, contact UWEC on 0414 320 520 or 0414 320 169. UWEC is open every day from 8 am till 6 pm.
Charles was not born in captivity. Next, read the tragic story behind this elephant-sized bundle of fun… Imagine: elephants swimming to an island!