Elephant MovementsPHOTO CREDIT: © Daryl Balfour
Having studied elephants within Samburu and further up North near the Kenya Ethiopia border, David says “given the distances we had to travel to move from one population to the next, we never dreamed the two groups of families had ever interacted. Even with my ability to recognize elephant’s faces, I didn’t made the connection that some of the elephants in Marsabit were the same guys in Samburu.”
After collaring one bull, David watched in awe as the huge creature streaked across the plains and desert, covering over 200km from Samburu to Marsabit in just 4 days. The reason was even more startling: ladies. The bull was looking for mates!
David went to Mali in the mid 2000s to collar more elephants, and make more such discoveries. The Desert elephants of Mali are even more fascinating, firstly for the scale of their migrations (the Marsabit elephant’s streaking pales in comparison), and the hardships they endure. Now, as settlements encroach, war ravages and climate change bites, the fate of these elephants hangs in the balance.
All this information would not be so attractive without unique software that enables us to visualize these elephants, and tell their amazing stories to the world. Enter Google Earth. With customised technology, STE are able to animate and view elephant movements like never before, showing the nations what the elephants now need to survive.
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