Unlike many other animals, eland do not easily change their coat colour, but can certainly change their lifestyle. Elvis, the most popular eland at Chikwenya, has earned his name because of his easy-going attitude.
Is it age catching up with Elvis now though, as his coat colour has changed from its general fawn-tawny appearance to grey? It is quite amazing how Elvis has become so habituated to people since Chikwenya became a safe haven from predators for him.
Perhaps it’s no wonder that eland feature prominently in Bushman paintings. They clearly easily adapt to living close to human beings. These antelope are more accustomed to open scrub-covered plains and woodland, but Elvis has realised it is safer to stay close to camp.
It turns out that we have a lot in common with Elvis. Everyone, including these animals, needs love, attention, care and protection; however it is very rare to find one of the largest living antelopes seeking refuge with human beings.
Everyone at Chikwenya loves Elvis so much that when a day passes without seeing him around, everyone gets worried, appreciating what a crucial role he plays in dispelling the misconceptions of human-wildlife conflict.
Written by Barlington Nemhara, Chikwenya Staff Member
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Barlington Tafadzwa Nemhara was born in Kariba but left the town at a tender age to attend school in Bulawayo at Usher Primary School and Milton High School.
He obtained his diploma in Communications and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA) in Harare, and is currently working towards his Bachelor of Arts degree in Media Studies through the Zimbabwe Open University. Upon completion of his first diploma, he joined the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation as a production assistant and an editor.
He joined Wilderness Safaris Chikwenya as a kitchen porter in March 2019.This is Barlington’s first job in the tourism industry, and he is already seeing endless opportunities to grow, both professionally and academically.
“For me, working for such a well-respected organisation has been an eye opener, and hopefully the beginning of many new adventures”, he says.
Prior to joining Wilderness Safaris, Barlington worked for, amongst others, the Ministry of Justice’s Legal Aid Directorate, where he worked as a legal advisor and a marketing officer.
Barlington enjoys writing stories inspired by nature and what’s happening around him. Since joining Wilderness Safaris his life has changed dramatically, with many new doors opening for him.
“Indeed”, he confirms, “the Wilderness journey changes lives”.
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