Article by Dalene Ingham-Brown 14 January 2014

Wildlife conservation wonderland 

Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, part of Shamwari Group, has welcomed the birth of a healthy elephant calf, which is the sixth elephant calf born on this vast 54, 000 hectare wilderness reserve, a leisurely three hour drive from Cape Town in the magnificent Karoo.

The herd has welcomed its arrival and for now rangers are keeping their distance so that the mother, calf and herd are not disturbed. Until the rangers are able to get closer to the calf, the sex of the calf is unknown.

Elephants have the longest gestation period of all mammals, carrying their young for nearly two years before giving birth. These long developmental periods are common among highly intelligent animals. Since elephants are the largest living, and biggest brained land animal in the world there is a lot of developing for elephants to do in the womb.

Shamwari Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, situated on the sister property Shamwari Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape, has released three young caracals onto the reserve who have been rehabilitating at the Centre for the past seven months. Abandoned on a nearby farm, the farmer brought them to Shamwari Wildlife Rehab Centre, which is renowned for its exceptional wildlife and conservation work.

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