Young calf playing with their parent. PLAYFUL IMAGES show an incredibly cute two-month old baby elephant who should be called “Dusty” playing with his mum in the dusty sand.
One image from the Kenya bush shows a 220-pounds elephant calf kicking the ground with their flat feet to create a cloud of dusty sand.
Another cute shot shows the two-month old infant elephant grabbing his mother’s tail in his trunk, showing off his strong grip.
Animal Care Specialist Diana Higareda (36) from the United Arab Emirates came across this beautiful herd of 14 African Bush Elephants while searching for the creatures in Kenya, Africa.
Diana captured images of the majestic animals with a ILCE-7RM4A and SEL200-600mm , F5.6-6.3 GOSS lens camera while being only 10-metres away from the action.
These images show the playful and energetic nature of elephant calves with their herd through images caught of the elephants rolling in the dirt during playtime, and piling on-top of their elder’s heads to release their playful energy.
Diana has been able to work with and capture over 12 baby elephants so far in her career but stated that every time she captures new images, she is once again amazed by their fierce, unpredictable yet playful nature.
“I feel like the most lucky person ever,” she said.
“They trust you enough to show you these behaviours and I like to think that they see us like part of the herd and that’s amazing.
“I feel blessed and happy to be able to be in that precise moment there and to capture it and be able to share with people through my photos our passion for wildlife and how beautiful and stunning animals can be.”
Diana has studied elephants and their unique familial bonds through actively finding herds in the wild at least once per-year, and capturing incredible imagery such as these.
“Elephants have this unique and strong family bond that lasts forever and begins from day one,” she said.
“They have a very marked hierarchy and ancestral knowledge and lots of things change when a baby is born in the herd.
“It is very beautiful and interesting to see how the herd behaves with this new baby.
“Babies are very playful. They like to run, climb, and play all day long with the other calves.
“It’s very fun to witness this behaviour, everything is new and they are also very curious creatures and they want to explore the world around them.”
After capturing the images, Diana felt empowered that she had captured such beautiful creatures in their own habitat, unaware of the impact they were making on her.
“It’s a powerful feeling, we have been blessed to work with many baby elephants so far (more than 12 calves now) and every single one is different,” she said.
“I like to say that as we humans have our own personality they have their own ‘elephantonality’.
“You learn to know how they behave normally, when they are happy, angry, sick, when they trust you and that’s also a bond for life, it's very special.”
Diana reinstates that although elephants are usually portrayed as gentle creatures, they can be unpredictable.
“They are symbolised somehow like peaceful creatures, but they are very unpredictable, heavy, strong with an incredible ability and they are for sure dangerous and wild animals but when you are that close, and they see you, nothing will be the same ever again, you can feel this soul- connection and respect,” she said.
“They always make baby talk sounds which are so cute.
“Baby elephants are clumsy little things that can melt everybody’s hearts and I can't deny it, I`m so in love with them, too.”
mediadrumimages/ Diana Higareda