写真

Photographer's Note

It must be hard in the early days trying to stand up when you are an elephant! I was watching this one struggle for a while, he kept getting onto his knees, putting one foot on the ground then falling back down.

The shot was taken in Pinnawalla Elephant Orphanage which is about 80km outdide Colombo. Pinnawalla started in 1975 and was originally more for tourism. Now their successful breeding program means that this is a model for other organisations as well as being a safe haven for elephants with disabuilities.

At Pinnawalla there is one adult female who lost her foot after stepping on a landmine. An English company made her a prosthetic foot but she rejected it preferring to limp her way around the sanctuary.

There痴 also a huge male who was blinded after he was shot by hunters trying to get his tusks. The size of him makes it seem all the more sad.

Twice a day all the elephants, about 70 of them, are taken down the main street of the town to take a bath in the river. It might take the crippled female a bit longer than the others, but she gets there in the end. And once in the water, the other elephants touch her with their trunks for reassurance. The big male is helped down to the water by his keeper.

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Additional Photos by Rebecca Duffy (thebecky) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 273 W: 6 N: 88] (688)
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