In November 2016 DAC Aviation (EA) took part in an incredible effort to rescue a young orphaned elephant from the Maasai Mara, moving him to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT) in Nairobi, Kenya. Rescue flights for orphaned elephants are not uncommon in Kenya, but this was a special case because of the size of the animal – at roughly four years old, Kelelari (as he has since been named) weighs over one tonne and could not be transported in a Cessna Caravan like the smaller baby elephants.
Luckily, our DCH-5 Buffalo, on lease to Trident Aviation, was available to do the job and with some quick planning by our team in Nairobi, a crew was quickly dispatched along with the veterinarians from DSWT.
It was not easy task loading Kelelari on and off the Buffalo, but after a hard day’s work from all involved, he arrived in his new home where he will be rehabilitated and cared for in Nairobi’s world-renowned elephant orphanage until he is ready to fend for himself in the wild. It was an unforgettable day for all of us at DAC in Kenya!