Yeah, I know I haven’t exactly been a prolific Internet contributor in recent months. I’m retired, you see, and there are places to go, people to see, and golf courses to conquer. Today, though, I interrupt your Internet travels because I’ve come up with a twist to an interesting story that is guaranteed to get liberal boxers in a bunch. This is an opportunity I just cannot pass up .. so be sure to read to the very end here. Besides, I need to get in a few more licks before 0bama completely hands over the control of the Internet to the United Nations.
We’re going to talk about elephants. Not the GOP kind of elephant, but actual big-eared lumbering wild African elephants (loxodonta Africana) living in Africa, as African elephants are predisposed to do.
These particular elephants are living in the Amboseli National Park in Kenya, where they have been the subjects of some rather extensive studies by people who extensively study elephants. I learned of the results of these studies reading an article by Virginia Morell of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Let’s get to the (elephant) meat of this study.
The elephants in question are living in close proximity to two different African tribes; the Maasai and the Kamba. The men from these tribes differ in dress, language, and, more importantly, how they treat the elephants. Maasai men sometimes kill the elephants. It seems the Maasai don’t particularly appreciate the elephants attacking Maasai tribesmen and their cows. The Kamba men, on the other hand, are gentle farmers who live among, but do not threaten, the elephants. Perhaps they don’t own cows.
Please understand that the Maasai men do not attack the elephants every time they encounter one, and some Maasai men, perhaps the majority, will never find cause to try to kill an elephant. The elephants know, however, that a greater threat exists from Maasai than from Kamba.
So, how does this affect elephant behavior?
Maasai men like to wear red robes. Kamba men do not. So when the elephants see men in red robes approaching they react defensively. Usually they flee, or they will form defensive perimeters around their young. When the Kamba approach the elephants seem to be completely unconcerned and just go about their business.