Rare sight of ‘twin calves’

AMAZING MOTHER: The Herald reader Conor Ward’s picture of a mother elephant nursing two calves, that he thinks may be twins. The picture was taken in the Addo Elephant National Park
AMAZING MOTHER: The Herald reader Conor Ward’s picture of a mother elephant nursing two calves, that he thinks may be twins. The picture was taken in the Addo Elephant National Park

THE bulk of the elephants in the Addo Elephant National Park are currently congregating in the Woodlands area, taking advantage of new growth of foliage after some rain a short while ago. Last week I spotted a “mama” with two calves.

There have been no reports of twins around. However, this certainly looks that way.

Although elephants regularly act as surrogate “mamas”, I have to say there was no evidence of another mother in the group that might have been the biological parent of one of those calves, although admittedly, you never know. Twins are a rarity and commonly should a set be born, one calf normally does not live long.

Well, twins or not, after a lifetime of watching wildlife, this is my first experience of two calves being nursed by the same mother. Go Mama!

-Conor Ward, Addo

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