I am a total elephant addict and just love absolutely everything about them, their beauty, their grandeur, their inner silence and unexplainable wisdom and their deep deep understanding and connection to the earth. I could watch them all day every day and be completely happy.
So when this press release ended up in my inbox, I didn’t need to think twice about the fact that I would like to share it with our followers. Even if you are not an Amarula or alcohol drinker, I think we can still all appreciate the work that they are doing in helping to save these amazing mammals.
Many thanks and good luck!
AMARULA HONOURS WORLD ELEPHANT DAY
With August 12 designated World Elephant Day, Amarula is highlighting the value in understanding elephant behaviour to promote the development of conservation management strategies for key populations in public and private game parks.
The Amarula Elephant Research Programme (AERP) under the leadership of Prof Rob Slotow of the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) is recognised as a global authority on African elephant behaviour. Running since 2002, it is funded by the not-for-profit Amarula Trust.
According to global marketing spokesperson Siobhan Thompson, elephants are the focus of Amarula’s research programme because they are known to really relish marula fruits that ripen in summer.
The research programme, involving post-doctoral and other researchers, includes field studies and analysis of information derived from GPS devices fitted to elephants and that record their movements at 30-minute intervals.
Findings have helped to understand how elephants respond to barriers like fencing and what happens when these barriers are removed. Researchers have also discovered that elephants can be quite particular in choosing trees on which to browse and they know that male and female elephants feed differently.
“Everything learned can be applied to better elephant conservation management,” says Thompson.
Amarula has also developed an app, downloadable from Facebook that lets viewers track six collared elephants roaming in the Kruger National Park. Through images and video footage, observers can witness them in the wild and learn some very interesting facts about elephant behaviour.