Rescue Operation: DSWT Team Rushes to Aid Injured Elephant Bull at Taita Salt Lick Sanctuary

In a race against time, the devoted team at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT) in Bura sprang into action when they spotted an injured elephant bull while patrolling the Taita Salt Lick Sanctuary.

This incident occurred just a day after the team had successfully treated another elephant.

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Swiftly returning to the scene, they found the limping bull resting under a tree, prompting an urgent response.


The team immobilized the elephant using 18 mgs of Etorphine delivered via a dan-inject dart from a vehicle to begin the treatment.

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Within seven minutes, the bull succumbed to the tranquilizer, allowing the team to conduct a thorough examination.

They discovered a penetrating wound above the fetlock joint on the left hind foot and another wound entering the left knee joint from the cranial aspect of the foot.


The wounds underwent meticulous cleaning with a solution of water, Hydrogen Peroxide, and tincture of iodine.

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Subsequently, the team packed the wounds with green clay to facilitate healing.

Additionally, the bull received intravenous administration of 50 ccs of Dexamethasone Hcl and 100 ccs of long-acting Amoxicillin injected intramuscularly to address potential infection and inflammation.


Concluding the procedure, the anesthesia was reversed by administering Diprenorphine Hcl at three times the Etorphine dose.

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Despite initial struggles, the bull regained consciousness and slowly moved away, indicating a successful recovery from the anesthesia.

Regrettably, the prognosis for the injured elephant bull remains guarded poor. The severity of the wounds and potential complications during the healing process present significant challenges to the bull’s overall health and recovery. Continuous monitoring and care will be crucial in determining the outcome.


The rapid and compassionate response from the DSWT team underscores their unwavering commitment to wildlife conservation and welfare.

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Despite the challenging prognosis, the intervention has provided this elephant bull with a fighting chance for recovery, highlighting the dedication of those tirelessly working to protect these majestic creatures in their natural habitats.

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