Footage of an angry elephant ramming into a safari vehicle has gone viral on social media.
Branding on the vehicle and rangers clothing shows that the footage was taken at Selati Game Reserve near Hoedspruit.
The footage – captured by a passenger travelling in a separate vehicle – was released in segments. The footage is currently making the rounds on both Twitter and WhatsApp.
Cape Town etc reportedly contacted EcoTraining who confirmed that the incident took place.
“Sunday 28 November 2021, an elephant bull in musth damaged an EcoTraining vehicle on the Selati Game Reserve.”
Elephant Bulls in musth
Musth refers to a periodic condition in bull elephants characterised by highly aggressive behaviour and accompanied by a large rise in reproductive hormones.
“On a routine activity, the EcoTraining instructors and trainees came across a breeding herd of elephants,” the statement continues. “The vehicle stopped to observe the elephants and give them a chance to settle down.
“An elephant bull, who was with the breeding herd, mock charged the vehicle. The elephant bull mock charged again, when they moved forward slowly, and then made contact with the game drive vehicle and displaced it off the road.
Keeping safe while on safari
“Once the vehicle had come to a standstill, the trainees were moved to the second vehicle that was parked in close proximity. Both EcoTraining instructors that accompanied the trainees have more than 25 years of experience in the field.
Assessing the situation
The General Manager of Selati Game Reserve, Mr Bryan Havemann, was contacted shortly after the incident and went to the scene to assess the situation.
Havemann said, “although the vehicle was damaged, thankfully none of the people on the vehicle was injured.”
EcoTraining said that all the people involved in the incident have received professional counselling after the incident.
The third video (down below) shows the extent of damage to the vehicle.