Saving Enkikwe

I came home and found a mysterious stiff envelope in the mail.

It’s a surprise from Jen Phillips.



It’s from Terra Dreams, who donates half the proceeds from her art to Elephants Without Borders and The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

What a beautiful thing.

Jen and the other people who have bought the art have fostered three orphan elephant calves. One is Enkikwei.

A young approximately 20 year old female elephant mother was sighted on the 22nd of September and appeared healthy while happily playing with her two calves near Enkikwei an area in the Mara North Conservancy. The older of her two calves was approximately seven years old and male while the younger baby was estimated to be approximately 10 – 11 months old male. Tragically on the 23rd of September the same mother was discovered dead but with no visible injuries. This came as a terrible shock to both the Mara North Conservancy Management and the DSWT funded mobile veterinary team based in the Masai Mara who responded to the case. Signs of acute Gastroenteritis were evident and to this day it remains a mystery as to what could have possibly killed her so rapidly unless she had eaten something poisonous. She was found dead a few meters away from the Musiara entrance gate of the Masai Mara near the Masai village called Enkikwei where she was sighted the previous day.

The baby calf at this stage was being protected by his elder brother, still in the orbit of where his mother lay lifeless on the Mara plains. Very tragically despite his brother’s best efforts, being so young and milk dependent, he could not survive without being rescued and hand raised so the team on the ground new this decision had to be made and in good time before he became vulnerable to predators.

So they did.

Sweet Enkikwe


  1. jenniferphillips says

    Ooh, not fostered by myself–it’s a group effort by all of us who bought the beautiful elephant art.

  2. jenniferphillips says

    Here’s one of the others that we ‘chose’ to foster (even though the money actually gets distributed amongst all the babies):

    This was a complicated situation as an elephant had killed a woman from the community and had been shot by KWS as a result. The calf had been left behind in the fracas that ensured with the stampeding herd, and any chance of reconciling her with the herd was impossible given the circumstances.

    The angry community of Kimanjo had set upon the baby in revenge spearing her several times. When she took refuge in the grounds of a nearby school the children began stoning her. Very swiftly the warden of the Naibunga Conservancy came to the calf’s rescue and kept her safe from the community who were baying for her blood in retaliation for recent events.

    All have a story. Every one of them is a mixture of human compassion and human monstrosity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *