Elephant populations in southern Africa are at constant risk from poaching. But a group of elephants in Zimbabwe, all of whom were able to survive attempts to kill them for their ivory, and were later rescued by local conservationists, reopened a chapter in their lives when they were released back into the wild.
The Zimbabwe Elephant Nursery (ZEN) helped in the rehabilitation of the elephants, who were victims of trauma from not just poaching but also injury and abuse. “The six elephants were darted, loaded onto trucks and driven across the country. The journey took 16 hours and covered 900 km. The exercise was a complex one involving multiple stakeholders and was an overwhelming success,” ZEN said in a statement, according to Zimbabwe Independent. They were released into a protected sanctuary area in the Panda Masuie Forest.
A touching video of their reintroduction into the wild was posted by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), which collaborated with ZEN for the task.