Apollo's Rescue

African Safari Fauna Sibuya Game Reserve

Four BUFFALO calves have been born recently much to our delight. It's been a real treat to see these tiny little creatures bounding along on still wobbly legs!

Mike called us urgently the other day to say that the newest little member was being “bullied” by the two juvenile RHINO bulls....they were apparently just being very nosey and pushing the little new-born creature around...even rather roughly lifting its hind-legs off the ground! The bullies got discouraged briefly by the large BUFFALO bull charging them but couldn't resist coming back for more sport...Wisely the buffalo herd moved off as soon as the little ones were strong enough to manage the hike.


The Buffalo calf now fully recovered from its ordeal

While returning on a tractor from a day of bush-clearing for a wedding, at a spectacular view-point, Apollo came across a tiny ZEBRA foal (Equus burchelli) which seemed to be healthy but appeared to have been abandoned. The foal must have been extremely hungry and desperate because it came straight towards the idling tractor, seemingly appealing to him and unafraid of the loud noise. Apollo decided that regretfully he couldn't really do anything constructive as evening was approaching and he still had a long drive home. He slowly moved off and much to his surprise and delight, the foal followed...A slow three km further, it was still behind him and making vocal attempts to create a “bond” with the tractor or slow it down! At that stage Apollo had to go through a barrier and onto a public road...with regret he took his leave of the now fairly exhausted baby but didn't feel too bad as there was at least water near-by. He hoped the foal would drink after its long walk. About a km further along his journey he spotted a family group of zebra in the veld and his conscience nagged him enough that he turned the tractor around and returned to the foal. When the foal saw him approaching, it seemed delighted, again making attempts at vocal communication ...and then, as before, the little foundling started to follow. Apollo took another longer route back through the veld towards the group of zebra who were now curiously watching his noisy approach. Suddenly, there was a huge commotion as the mother spotted and recognized the foal and many “joyful” zebra sounds followed as they were noisily reunited! How this baby got left behind, we'll never know but at least the story had a happy ending! Apollo admitted that he went to sleep with a warm heart and a smile as he remembered his wonderful “rescue”... Thank you Apollo!


Zebra family happily reunited



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