Elephants Mourn Matriarch In Mysterious Ceremony

Heartbroken wildlife keepers have told how a beloved elephant was comforted by her family and friends in a touching mourning ritual during her last moments at a sanctuary in Brazil.

Veteran tusker Pocha, 55, had been given her first taste of freedom when she was transferred to the Natural Elephant Sanctuary (SEB) in Mato Grosso, Brazil, just five months ago (May).


Keepers said she arrived at the sanctuary with health problems after a lifetime in captivity.

But her health gradually worsened and led to the stately matriarch’s death on Thursday, 6th October, according to local media reports.

Pocha had travelled 3,300 kilometres with her daughter, Guillerma, 22, to the 1.500-hectare Brazilian sanctuary after they were released from the Mendoza Zoo in Argentina.

SEB officials stated: “When (Pocha) and Guillermina arrived, (Pocha) was a little slower to eat, but after a multivitamin injection, she got better.

“A few days ago, we noticed that she was picky about her hay, although she was still grazing and enjoying all the produce she was given.

Elephants Pocha, 55, and Guillermina, 22, mother and daughter, were transferred from a small enclosure in Mendoza, Argentina to beautiful natural habitat in in Matto Grosso, Brazil. (Senasa/Newsflash)

“After a vitamin shot last night, she looked brighter and, although she was still tired, she had more light in her eyes.”

Despite this, SEB officials discovered that the beloved tusker passed away later that night.

Pocha was then mourned by her fellow elephants in a heart-touching ceremony.

First, she was comforted by her daughter and a number of elephant companions as she was dying.

A pair of former zoo elephants have packed ther trunks to move to a lush animal sanctuary after spending their lives in captivity.

Read More >>>

Then her clearly distressed daughter Guillerma then let out a loud heartbroken cry which drew more elephants to the scene, according to reports.

SEB officials added: “Once we opened the doors for the other girls to come in, Bambi, Mara and Rana were there waiting to be with Guille.”

The elephants then approached the mother and daughter one by one as they paid their respects to their late companion.

The transport of elephants Pocha, 55, and Guillermina, 22, mother and daughter, from a small enclosure in Mendoza, Argentina to beautiful natural habitat in in Matto Grosso, Brazil. (Mendoza Gobierno/Newsflash)

Then the herd watched over Pocha’s body respectfully for a significant period of time, explained the officials.

They added: “Bambi approached, but kept a distance, with his eyes slightly open and looking worried.

“Just after midnight, they all stood on different sides of Pocha, calm and relaxed.”

To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By: Alice Amelia ThomasSub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash

The Ananova page is created by and dedicated to professional, independent freelance journalists. It is a place for us to showcase our work. When our news is sold to our media partners, we will include the link here.


We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Signup to our Newsletter