By Shaanaaz de Jager
AN EASTERN Cape game reserve is celebrating the surprise discovery of an elephant calf that is the daughter of the legendary Hapoor junior – and grand-daughter of the even more famous original Hapoor that reigned supreme at the Addo Elephant National Park in the 1930s and 40s.
The calf was discovered at Pumba Private Game Reserve near Grahamstown by a guide, Gladman Vayo.
Reserve conservation manager Richard Pearse said the beautiful baby elephant was “in good health” and believed to have been born on Wednesday June 13.
Hapoor junior, son of Addo’s legendary bull Hapoor, died at Pumba in March at the age of 58 after he was attacked by his brother, Nick, in a struggle for the right as dominant bull.
Hapoor junior had been the dominant bull at Addo for 26 years and along with three other bulls was relocated to Pumba in 2005.
Hapoor senior’s claim to fame was that he was part of the original herd of just 11 wild elephants that were left in the Addo area after the animals were virtually wiped out by farmers and hunters.
However, in keeping with modern game reserve practice, the newly discovered calf will not be given a name, as doing so will “do away with the natural experience of truly being in a wilderness area”, Pearse said.
“This beautiful little elephant calf was discovered by Gladman while conducting an afternoon game drive at about 4.30pm on Wednesday, June 13.
This is a shortened version of an article that first appeared in the print edition of Weekend Post on Saturday June 23 2012.