Hesc profileHand rearing elephant orphans in their first few years of life, the HESC provides a safe haven for calves until they’re ready to join their first herd.



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Every elephant needs a herd, which is why the Hoespruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) provides a sanctuary where elephant orphans are hand reared by experts.  The first few years of an elephant’s life are highly fragile, where calves are dependent on their mothers and herd to survive.  

As a caring and safe haven, the HESC raises vulnerable young calves by hand until they’re ready to join a herd – something that’s crucial to an elephant’s emotional health. And it’s a momentous task to see orphaned elephant calves through to that point.

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Two such baby elephants, Mopane and Raekie, were brought into care in HESC’s sanctuary. Providing rehabilitation and care requires knowledge and expertise, and once the team feels these youngsters are ready, they’ll introduce them a unique herd of elephants at Camp Jabulani which accepts other elephants not born to the herd.