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Elephant Swim

Apr 5, 20200 comments

Elephants are an amazing sight to see. From their majestic size and intelligence to their unbelievable parental care is always a treat when out on a drive. Our guides know that so often it is a once in a lifetime experience for a guest to see a wild animal like elephants so we try our best to make it a special occasion no matter what animal we see.

All mammals generate heat through metabolism. Elephants have many different ways of controlling their body temperature.  Elephants being big and active generate a lot of heat. This, added to the hot summer sun their body temperature can rise rather quickly. They have a different mechanism that they use to help them cool down, from ear flapping to mud bathing are all great ways to dissipate heat.

But the most enjoyable is probably a good old fashion swim. Yes, elephants are very good swimmers and they thoroughly enjoy the water. It not only cools them down but takes some of the weight of their feet. They can sometimes play for hours in the water doing somewhat acrobatic displays which are of course a sight to see. You will find them play fighting or even splashing as they fall over backwards.

Their amazing agility becomes evident. To see how swiftly they can move and push and play is a humbling experience. All of this just to relax and dissipate heat while having a bit of fun. This is, however, a great way to bond and strengthen relationships within the herd.

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Story and photos by Ranger Chris Reiners – Buffalo Camp

Latest news

Interesting and surprising facts about elephants

Interesting and surprising facts about elephants

For a fully-grown elephant, you can imagine how hot they must be. Elephants have different methods to help cool themselves down. The easiest of course is to stand in the shade but with the African sun that doesn’t always help.

read more

From the Ranger Blog

  • Kapama elephants big fiveInteresting and surprising facts about elephants
    For a fully-grown elephant, you can imagine how hot they must be. Elephants have different methods to help cool themselves down. The easiest of course is to stand in the shade but with the African sun that doesn’t always help....
  • Kapama lions on a huntLions on a Hunt
    So naturally, I turned the game vehicle around and followed the young lions. Much to our great surprise, these lions began to show signs of stalking prey. I turned to my guests and explained the behaviour of these young Lions....
  • Kapama wild dogs rhinoEndangered Species Day
    An endangered species is any animal or plant at risk of becoming extinct or in danger of being eradicated from the Earth. The 21st of May is Endangered species day. A day we can shine a light on the animals whose numbers have declined so much over the years that they have sadly found a place on the endangered species list. ...
  • Kapama impalaImpalas of Kapama
    After giving birth, the lamb can walk 30 minutes after being born. After only two days, they can already run as fast as their mother....
  • Kapama ConservationChallenge for Conservation
    Conservation seeks the proper use of nature, while preservation seeks protection of nature from use. Kapama staff joined a great initiative to raise awareness for conservation....

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