The last two weeks were really exciting for us. Two elephant trainers from Mexico, Gerardo and Rodrigo, visited Riziki and Ndarakwai, the two rescued elephants. They helped us to build a safe training wall and started a training program in protected contact. This is especially important when it comes to medical treatments of the elephants by a vet. Elephants are gentle giants, but in certain situations they might make use of their strength. With the training, wall treatments and caring for the elephants will become safer for the vets and more fun for the elephants, as they learn that when they’re inside the wall, they get a lot of positive reinforcement for letting the vet or the handler do their work. Also, their cooperation increases, because they know that they can leave the training at any time, which helps them to feel safer.
Gerardo and Rodrigo trained several different behaviors with Riziki and Ndarakwai which will enable us to do treatments with the elephants in a safe environment and will also improve the daily care for the animals. At the same time, Gerardo and Rodrigo trained the current elephant handlers how to maintain the behaviors and train new ones. Especially for Ndarakwai this was very important, as he hasn’t been trained before and is quite insecure when it comes to caring and treating.
We would like to thank Gerardo Martinez and Rodrigo Salas – your visit was extremely helpful and enriching for everybody involved and we hope to see you again soon!
Training Ndarakwai and Riziki


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