Photographer's Note

Brian Denton is a big elephant fan so this one is for you Brian! Taken in the Tsavo National Park, in Kenya, this family group displays the familiar red colour for which they are known. Elephants use mud as a skin protector and here their colour is a result of the coating of mud.
I like to think that this group is a family group with twins but the likelihood of seeing a female elephant with twin calves is exceedingly rare and almost never happens. The reason for this is that both twins seldom survive the natural odds which are stacked against them.
Predators such as lion and hyena are a typical threat to the young elephants, especially if the calves become separated from the herd. Over and above the danger of predation is the probability that the mother will not be able to provide enough milk to both calves, resulting in the survival of the calf with the most determination. If the female does have twins, it is likely that the weaker one will die before it reaches the age of six months.

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This photograph is copyright of Rosemary Walden - © Rosemary Walden 2013. All rights reserved. Any redistribution or reproduction of the image in any form is prohibited. You may not, except with my express written permission, copy, reproduce, download, distribute or exploit the content. Nor may you transmit it or store it in any other website or other form of electronic retrieval system

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Additional Photos by Rosemary Walden (SnapRJW) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2818 W: 85 N: 6957] (31629)
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