An albino elephant calf was rescued after spending four days stuck in a barbarous snare and suffering severe injuries, including a Joker-like scar across her face.
The animal, a female named Khanyisa, has unusual pink skin rather than the normal grey of elephants.
She was discovered fully alone, entangled in a trap in a private reserve on the edge of Kruger National Park in South Africa.
Khanyisa has significant lacerations on both the back of her ears and the back of her neck. The snare had also looped around her cheeks, ripping into her lips on each side, making her seem terribly like Batman villain Joker.
The baby elephant’s wounds were so terrible that maggots began devouring the raw skin decomposing around her cheeks, creating large holes in her mouth.
Thankfully, Khanyisa was saved from her experience by Hoedspruit Elephant Rehabilitation and Development (HERD) and is currently recovering in her new home.
According to the organization’s Sue Howells: “She appeared innocent, frail, and pure, yet brave – a one-of-a-kind beauty who had been terribly disfigured by man’s hands.
“We realized we had to aid her, protect her, and provide her with a safe haven so she wouldn’t have to go through such ordeals again.
“Khanyisa is a courageous and robust little elephant.
“She is extraordinarily tough and appears to have an unbreakable spirit.
“Despite everything she has undergone at such a young age, her precious, sensitive, and compassionate attitude shows through her resilience.”
Adine Roode, the creator of HERD, opted to name the fragile animal Khanyisa, which means “light” in Shona, a Bantu language spoken by the Shona people of Zimbabwe.
She is now happily healing at the orphanage, which was established to rehabilitate and hand raise displaced or orphaned elephant calves.
The facility is located in the Kapama Game Reserve and was designed to be close to the Jabulani herd.
Allowing newborn elephants to live among a herd is regarded to be beneficial to their mental well-being and helps them assimilate more quickly.
According to the website: “When a rescued child arrives to the orphanage, he or she is traumatized, exhausted, sunburned, and maybe wounded.
“They are not your typical wild animal due to their great intellect and complexity.
“Their demands are complex and complicated, necessitating a specific type of treatment, one that includes heart and soul, respect, as well as milk and medicine.”