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Elephants Visit Thorn Tree Bush Camp

We will forever be known by the tracks we leave behind us!!

It is early July and a Sunday afternoon, and we are paid a visit by the older bull elephant of the Dinokeng reserve, "affectionately" known as Charles by land owners.

The grapefruit are just about ripe and perfectly yellow in color, on the tree inside the fenced off area of Thorn Tree Bush Camp.

Charles the bull elelephant is in the area and can smell the ripening citrus fruit, and decides it is time for his winter treat. He boldly walks up to the electric fence, erected to keep our wild friends including him on their side of the reserve.

However Charles has other ideas on this Sunday afternoon. He gives the fence a few smells and touches with his trunk testing the electric power.  Then decides his desire for the fruit is far stronger than his concern for the electric fence, so he just simply moves towards one of the upright poles and uses his right foot to give it a gentle push, bending it sufficiently to be able to easily walking over the fence and proceed to the grapefruit tree.

Not at all concerned he picks the fruit one by one from the trees using his trunk, then places in his mouth and enjoys. Of course fully knowing none of us are willing to challenge him, after all it is his Reserve and he far bigger than us.

He does not waste a single grapefruit as he clears the tree of all fruit, does not even considering leaving us any.

After enjoying the ripening fruit, he then slowly walks across the lawn towards the other trees in the garden, leaving a heap in the middle, as a reminder for us that he Charles has visited Thorn Tree Bush Camp.

To further convince us of his strength, (as if we are going to challenge him) he decides to push over one of the older trees, and brake a few branches of other trees before wondering off down to the other side of the garden, where he again, effortlessly creates an exit for himself by pushing over another fence pole and calmly exiting across the electric fence once more. Not at all concerned about the damage he has just left behind or the alarm now going off as a result of his destruction of the fence.

Well we thank him for leaving and proceeded to repair the fence once again, thanking Charles for welcoming us as new residents to Thorn Tree Bush Camp inside Dinokeng.

Thank you Charles. Yes, we feel welcome now and you will forever be known by the tracks you left behind.