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Christmas elephant back at the coast

Christmas elephant back at the coast

Niël Terblanché

THE young elephant bull that visited the coast on Christmas Eve has returned to the coast and is again being shepherded back to the Omaruru River.


The elephant visited the small holdings in the Swakop River during Saturday night where it drank some water at a homestead where the owner keeps horses before moving on towards Walvis Bay.


According to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Environment and Tourism, Romeo Myunda, officials intervened as the animal started moving in the direction of Walvis Bay behind the dune belt between the two coastal towns.



“For a second time in as many months our officials have rounded the elephant up. They had a bit of a hard time trying to turn him back where he came from,” Muyunda said.


According to Muyunda the elephant has been misbehaving since he was fitted with a radio collar about two weeks ago. The animal had to be chased back to the Omaruru River where it found a new home since Christmas after it was fitted with the radio collar.


Residents of Henties Bay said after the news of the elephant’s second visit broke that they have discovered his tracks and droppings in the dry river bed not far from the small coastal town.


Muyunda confirmed the reports of the Henties Bay resident and said that over the past week elephant made numerous attempts to leave the Omaruru River and move towards the coastal town.


“Each time our staff has driven him back towards Omaruru,” he said. “It is our intention to guide the elephant back to the Omaruru River. Alternatively and should the need arise we will capture him.”


By Sunday afternoon MET officials managed to guide the elephant back to the Swakop river and is still in the process of shepherding the animal in a north easterly direction.


Muyunda warned that people living on the banks of the Swakop River should stay indoors and be on the lookout for the elephant and the team of officials working to get him back to the safety of the Omaruru River.