About the evidence of elephants' emotions and brain power
Elephants - Nature's Gentle Giants by Coral Boucher
Whilst watching a documentary recently, I was drawn to write of the evidence of emotions and extreme love elephants showed
A very touching incident was when an elephant dam was about to give birth. All the male elephants kept watch some way away with their backs to the females who all formed a circle around the expectant mother. The sisters of the mother were closer and their trunks were draped over the shoulders of the mother. Like humans putting their arms around another. Others would be flapping their huge ears very quickly, presumably to cool the mother down and others would blow on her with their trunks. They rubbed shoulders with her and it was very emotive. They moved slowly and gently around her giving love and support.
When the huge baby was born, after many hours of hard labour, the aunties all blew on the baby with their trunks to give him strength perhaps and they pushed him with trunk and shoulder to assist him to his feet and hold him steady. Then instinctively knowing when the time was right, the baby's aunties wrapped their trunks around him and guided him to his greatest need now. His mother's milk
The aunties supported mother and baby for two or three days whilst the rest of the herd moved slowly forward. There were still some guards left dotted around to protect the female herd.
What touched me so much was, when the elephants came to an area with elephants bones strewn around. They had been there for quite some time as not all the bones were there and they were strewn around haphazardly. They all touched the bones gently and caressed the head with their trunks and tears where flowing from the eyes of each and every elephant. A low keening sound came from the herd, not a bellow, not shrill, just a gentle keening accompanied this display of love and respect. It was quite possible that none had known the owner of the bones, and that it may have been the bones of an ancestor long departed. The elephants knew and were deeply moved.