Hairless monkeys (by that I mean you, Dear Reader), often say the “real world” is rough and ruthless; they say, “It’s a jungle out there” or “watch out for the law of the jungle”–as if all animals other than hairless monkeys are just plain ruthless and heartless. How do you explain elephants rescuing antelopes?
A jungle out there?
In 2003 in South Africa, a herd of antelopes had been captured and put in a holding pen at a campsite. I’m not sure why they’d been captured. I think they were going to be “relocated”–that’s a polite hairless monkey word meaning “take you away from your home that you know and make you live somewhere else so some hairless monkeys can have your home.”
The lady leader of an elephant herd, Nana, had other ideas. She got together a Pachyderm posse. “We’ve got a mission,” she told them.
Elephants don’t do ninja. They don’t dress in black and sneak around silently. Elephants march in, trumpets blowing.
The antelopes were being fed, and the campsite was settling down for the night when Nana led a troop of 11 elephants into the camp.
The hairless monkeys who had caught the antelopes assumed the elephants were there to steal the food. They thought about trying to protect the food–but what do you say to a herd of elephants?
Sure enough, Nana and her squadron went straight to the antelope cage where the food was and circled it.
They studied the cage.
Nana’s elephant commandoes secured the perimeter (that’s a military phrase meaning “stand around and look tough or large, or large and tough, and let everyone know they should mind their own biscuits or, better yet, scram”).
Meanwhile, Nana went to the cage door and used her trunk to carefully undo all the latches and open it.
The antelopes ran out of the cage as fast as they could.
The elephants waited while the antelopes escaped, keeping an eye on the confused hairless monkeys, as if to say, “Go ahead, hairless monkeys, make a move.”
When the antelopes were all gone, on Nana’s command, the pachyderm posse marched back into the night.
So what’s the “law of the jungle”?
When last I saw them, Nana’s troop was still out there, ready for other missions. What should we call them, “Sergeant Nana, Agent of Trunk”? “General Nana and her Pachyderm Posse”? “Fifty tons of Justice?” Maybe you have a better name? Whatever you call her, she’s an animal superhero.
Share and connect–help build a Bliss community
Do you know about any animal superheroes? Do you know about elephants? (Shout-out here to two of BGB’s favorite humans, Molly and Lucy Bernardo, who we know like elephants.) Share your stories here, and for more about animal heroes, keep coming back here and read my Lazy Hero Cat and Pet Shop Heroes books.