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Elephant poaching is real. Some are saying that ivory is being used to fund Al Queda and other extremist terrorist group activities.  Our Wild Focus Expeditions groups are able to experience the effects of poaching when they come to Kenya with us and visit the Sheldrick Wildlife Orphanage in Nairobi. Wild Focus Expeditions adopts an elephant calf for every person who joins one of our Kenya safaris. The Sheldrick Center shuts down to the public so that our group has a private visit.  We are able to spend one hour with our newly adopted elephant calves.

These calves are orphans. Most of them have lost their mothers to poaching. One elephant is being killed for its ivory every 15 minutes in Africa.

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Daphne Sheldrick and her team of “Keepers” take these orphaned elephant babies in and desperately try to coax them to stay alive. They arrive traumatized, alone, starving and sometimes injured. They have little will to live after the traumatic ordeal of losing their mothers.

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Once they are out of danger of dying, they start to thrive again and are taken into the care of the Keepers, Daphne and all of the other young orphans.  After we adopt them, we are able to spend a precious hour with these sweet, little characters. They each have their own personalities and character traits.

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We then come back in the evening when they are put to bed. Each little elephant baby has its own Keeper who sleeps all night with it in its stall. They are given milk out of a bottle every three hours. These little ones are never alone once they reach the Center.  The Keeper covers the calf with a blanket when the calf lays down to go to sleep.

Roi was not ready to go to bed yet. She was a funny, energetic girl who fought sleep while trying to keep her eyes open.

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All of Kenya works with Daphne to save each little elephant calf. The Center visits all of the tribes who now know to call should they discover an abandoned elephant calf. Yes, one elephant is being killed every 15 minutes, yet there are some who are doing everything that they can to save one baby at a time.

~ Jami Tarris

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