It’s not a sight one sees every day: A limping elephant waiting patiently for veterinary care. But that’s exactly what happened at Bumi Hills Safari Lodge staff houses in Kariba, Zimbabwe, when a bull elephant walked up and seemed to know they would treat him.
Staff and volunteers of The Bumi Hills Foundation, which is a nonprofit that works in the area, often treat injured wildlife. They mobilized to help the injured elephant. Since their in-house vet was away, they had to call in a specialist to come in to help treat the elephant. While they were doing that, the staff members provided the elephant with water, who drank three buckets. The elephant remained at the lodge until help arrived, around six hours later.
After tranquilizing the elephant, the veterinarian was able to examine him. They found an injury on his shoulder that looked like a bullet wound from poachers, though they couldn’t find the bullet inside the elephant. They cleaned the injury, gave him antibiotics and attached a tracking collar on the elephant so they could keep track of his progress.
The elephant, now named Ben, has spent a lot of time around the lodge since he was treated. While he is still limping, his wound seems to be healing. The staff are continuing to monitor him and will do another check-up soon to see his progress.