Kay and I spent a morning with two rescue elephants named Jabu and Morula and their
handlers, Doug and Sandi Groves (www.facebook.com/withelephants). The elephants have lived with the Groves for many years, after being rescued.
Doug and Sandi shared quite a bit of information about elephants in general and about Jabu and Morula in particular.
We brought along an inflatable elephant which we presented to Doug and Sandi. They promptly named it
Thor, and introduced it to Jabu and Morula. Jabu and Morula were surprisingly gentle with the inflatable elephant,
considering their size and strength. Doug and Sandi took lots of pictures of the elephants with Thor, thinking that
they may make an interesting addition to their social media pages.
They actually walked the elephants to where we were waiting
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The larger one on the left is Jabu (and Thor), and the other is Morula
Jabu has a leg which was injured in an encounter with another elephant. He favors it somewhat, and the
Groves have attempted to help with a specialized orthotic brace. They are also trying to finance an x-ray machine
so that they can monitor the progress of any healing.
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Introducing Thor to Jabu
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Jabu is a bit bigger than Thor (about 11.5 feet tall)
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The two of us with Jabu (and Thor)
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Jabu "showing off"
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Kay walks with Morula
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And now the three of us together
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An elephant "hug" for Kay
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And one for Steve
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Such long eyelashes
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And the useful trunk
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Morula on her side. They don't stay there for long. When on their sides
the weight of their organs causes the bottom lung to partially collapse. The heart rate increases to compensate
for the decreased lung capacity, so they have to get back on their feet after a very few hours. They also prefer
to lie on an incline as you see here, making it easier to get up.
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A look at Morula's teeth. Elephants have 26 teeth over their lifetime - their tusks are
specialized incisors, and their molars come in six groups of four molars. The new teeth come in from the rear,
pushing the older front teeth out.
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An elephant kiss for Kay
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And an elephant kiss for Steve
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Jabu holding Thor - he was quite gentle
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The two of them hold Thor between them
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A short video of them holding Thor
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A LONG video (about 5 minutes) of elephant sounds.