Oblivious to the cold - and predators - as night falls, an orphaned elephant calf holds a vigil by the body of his dead mother. 

The five-month-old lovingly laid his trunk on her as the emotional drama was played out in Samburu, northern Kenya. Worried for his safety, keepers from the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT), Kenya Wildlife Service and Save the Elephants worked through the night to capture the bull - who stubbornly refused to leave his mother's side.

 Vets were eventually able to tranquilise the youngster in the early hours of the morning, before driving him to the Samburu airstrip. A specialist team flew in to prepare the calf for the flight to his new home at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Elephant Orphanage.

 Located in the Nairobi National Park, the nursery is the only one of its kind in Kenya and receives elephants from across the country. After the flight, the severely dehydrated calf was driven to the orphanage, where keepers quenched his thirst with some milk and water. Some of the other 30 orphans at the nursery were bought in to welcome and comfort the new arrival, who was named Sokotei.

And despite the shock of his new surroundings, it wasn't long before the grieving calf was making new friends. 'Sokotei's rescue was a battle against time to keep him safe. Throughout the night, teams from Save the Elephants and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust were there to support the young calf and everyone had a long night battling to keep him safe from predators by trying to catch him,' DSWT director Rob Brandford said.

VIDEO Orphaned elephant calf holds a vigil by his dead mother

Responses to "Heartbroken baby elephant refuses to leave dead mother’s side through the night (Video)"

  1. Am just wondering how the mother has died. She has not been eaten by predators and I don't see massive wounds from e.g. tusks of a hostile elephant. Was it some kind of sickness? Wouldn't that be a contagion risk?

  2. Anonymous says:

    It says the mother died of a "Serious internal infection" at 0:10

  3. Anonymous says:

    How sweet they bought him more time and a good life while he grows up. Marsha

  4. Anonymous says:

    thank you for saving this beautiful creature from GOD...............they are such emotional must have been sohard for him, but his reception from the other lil orphans was amazing..........thank you for saving him..............

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