Created 25-Oct-13
30 photos

Infancy is a fascinating time for all species. In the case of the elephant life cycle, it is early childhood that is most captivating. The new-born enters this world at an incredible mass of 77-113 kg, with a height of about 91 cm at the shoulder, and may consume 11.4 litres of milk a day.The young calves are tended not only by their mothers, but also by other females of the herd. This kinship and social contact allows the young elephants to successfully reach other stages in life cycles. Infancy is not only an important time for the young calves,but also for the young mothers-to-be. It is through the close interaction and kinship between the two that allows the young females to develop necessary skills required for motherhood.Elephants typically are fully weaned at around 5 to 6 years of age.Also, the distance between an elephant calf and his/her mother increases with age. Overall, females tended to remain quite close to the mother and as expected the males were much more independent.
Arriving at the waterhole with aunts in towWaiting for mom to enter the waterProtected by MomNotice the enlarged mamaries of MotherThe very young tend to stick under the legsMothers with milk laden breastsThis was surprising with the young left unprotected

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