It all began with an alert by a local man on a tractor, who was on his way from the Vanabhadra Kaliamman temple in Mettupalayam to Thekkampatti and saw a cow elephant blocking the road with a herd in the background.
It is not every day that one sees a baby elephant being carried by a human, but trust us, once in a blue moon, miracles do happen!
When people saw a picture of a man carrying an elephant calf going viral on social media, little did they know that it was a mission undertaken by an official from the forest department, last Tuesday, to help the baby pachyderm reach its mother in Nellimala near Ooty’s Mettupalayam forest range.
Interestingly, it all began with an alert by a local man on a tractor, who was on his way from the Vanabhadra Kaliamman temple in Mettupalayam to Thekkampatti and saw a cow elephant blocking the road with a herd in the background.
No amount of honking had any effect on the steadfast elephant, who instead turned to attack the man.
Forest officials were called in immediately to send the herd back to the forest by bursting crackers, and it was then that they heard the cries of a baby elephant from a canal nearby. They realised that the calf had unfortunately separated from the mother, and was stuck in the mud. Following hours of toil, they were able to extricate the calf.
Realising that the elephant waiting on the other side of the road was the mother, the forest team immediately took the calf to its herd with one of the officials carrying it on his own shoulders. Funnily enough, the baby must have taken a liking to the forest officials, and kept returning to them.
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This went on for two days, during which the officials fed the calf with Lactogen, glucose and coconut water. Finally, it was on Thursday evening that the mother elephant mustered up the courage to approach the forest team and was able to take the calf back to their habitation.
At the end of the day, it was a happy story for both parties, especially the forest officials who were delighted to see the reunion of the mother and calf.
Now, you know, miracles do happen!