Amazing footage from Kenya shows the moment an ex-orphaned elephant returned from the wild to give birth at her old home, a local wildlife trust.
Emily, who starred in the BBC's Elephant Diaries, was an orphaned elephant who was hand-reared by staff at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Orphans’ Project in Kenya.
Video shows Emily returning to her old registration centre to give birth among her old keepers, with staff calling the new baby Emma.
The birth look place on the morning of 23 December and the footage of the event is rare because 99 per cent of elephant births take place at night, according to the Sheldrick Trust.
Commenting on the birth, Angela Sheldrick, said "it was filled with trumpets and rumbles of joy from Emily’s own herd of ex-orphaned elephant friends who had accompanied her back, all of whom were eager to carefully help the new precious bundle to its feet, nudging it gently, and using their trunks to lift the baby.”
The Sheldrick Trust, which has has successfully rescued, hand-reared and reintegrated over 90 orphaned elephants, said that one elephant is killed every 15 minutes in Africa by poachers. The population of the animal on the continent is now just 350,000.
The mother of the new-born, Emily, was orphaned in 1993 after she fell down a disused pit latrine. The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust rescued Emily and took care of her before transferring to the charity's Tsavo East Voi Reintegration Centre.
Elephants have the longest known gestation of any mammal: up to 680 days.
The Trust’s Keepers report that Emma is doing well, with Emily’s herd of ex orphans remaining close to the new born.