Golden years for elephants

Saving old, retired and unwanted elephants from captivity or euthenasia, the Elephant Reintegration Trust is restoring hope for freedom in their golden years.

Have you ever wondered about the fate of unwanted captive elephants? Where will old, retired or unwanted elephants go when they are no longer of economic value? Unfortunately, these elephants might be euthanised or remain in captivity where they will unwillingly, continue to be so-called ambassadors for their wild counterparts at the cost of their own freedom and health.

The Elephant Reintegration Trust (ERT) wants to change that. Their dream is to establish a reserve onto which these captive elephants can be fully reintegrated back into a wild system. This reserve will act as a haven for previously captive elephants in South Africa. Thanks to their  involvement in two successful elephant reintegration operations in South Africa, these gentle giants are living out their remaining years as wild elephants – enjoying the luxury of rivers, natural pans, and wild open spaces without being exploited by humans.

Building on their experience, ERT’s reintegration program incorporates the unique backgrounds of each elephant. ERT has also collaborated with other dedicated organisations, conducting several elephant translocations – and dedicating time to research focused on the welfare of wild and reintegrated elephants on small, fenced reserves in South Africa.

Their studies investigate how, and to what extent, various management-related factors could potentially impact elephant behaviour and compromise their welfare. To enhance their understanding of elephant behaviour on an ecological level,  various collaring operations are helping them understand movement patterns.

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The Elephant Reintegration Trust

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