A BRIEF OF AN ELEPHANT BLOODLINE Based on a true African story
An Elephant Bloodline records the hundred-year history of the Kruger National Park through the eyes and minds of the elephants. This book gives human beings powerful insights as to how elephants live and interact with one another on the African woodland savanna. The narrative also offers a dendrological and an ornithological walk through The Park, through the anecdotes of elephant family life.
The story itself is a carefully researched dramatic 'faction,' weaving in sketches and observations made by acclaimed animal behaviorists and authors like Joyce Poole, Katie Payne and Cynthia Mosse, who spent years researching elephant behaviour in Kenya’s Amboseli National Park.
Time in An Elephant Bloodline is recorded in moons. The author has speculated that elephants may be able to assimilate time periods as being from one full moon to the next.
There are presently more elephants on the sub-continent than there have ever been. How does their method of bulk feeding impact on biodiversity as a whole?
In 2003, a group of five sub-adult bulls broke from the Kruger Park into the Balule Game Reserve and, finally, into the commercial farming district near Hoedspruit in Limpopo Province, South Africa. Because the animals were threatened with being shot by nature conservation officers, the elephant taming and training company EFAF (Elephants for Africa Forever) was called in. World-renowned 'elephant whisperers,' Rory and Lindie Hensman, translocated four of the five named characters in An Elephant Bloodline to the EFAF facilities in Limpopo Province.
The fifth, Knobnose was destroyed by the authorities.
An Elephant Bloodline attempts to present some of the salient points in the current, often emotionally charged debate, regarding the alleged overpopulation of elephants in our national, provincial and private game parks and reserves. The sub-plot centers around the !Kung bushman of the Kalahari, the links between these communities and the eland and elephants being both dramatic and poignant.
An Elephant Bloodline asks such questions as: Who will ultimately retain the custodianship of our wilderness areas? Are these the communities who live in the peripheral areas surrounding our wildlife reserves? Can other members of our society help to give them a more clear understanding of the positive role they can play, in helping to preserve wild places? Can An Elephant Bloodline, in some small way, help to re-link some of these communities to ancient, lost wilderness ideologies?
Two elephant-calf half-sisters are separated in the waters of a flooded river after members of their family are gunned down by Shadrach, the legendary hunter and poacher. Over the years they rise through the ranks, eventually each becoming matriarchs of their own herds. They wander through The Park, observing the effect of the increasing elephant population on biodiversity or ecological stability. As adults they eventually meet one another again, under extraordinary circumstances.
An Elephant Bloodline records the way elephants are born, communicate with and care for each other. Taken from life, the book records incidents of puff adder bites, broken limbs and a broken back; as well as death by predators and near-death from thirst. In other words, it narrates the full spectrum of happenings in the natural world that may impact on elephant families.
Meanwhile, the Eastern elephant god, Lord Rijhna, has been appointed custodian of all the elephants in the world. By 1994, when there is a cessation of the culling of the elephants in Kruger, Rijhna feels that he is losing his touch, and seeks assistance from the shores of Africa.
A replacement African elephant goddess is appointed. She is inaugurated on the Soutpansberg Mountains near the town of Thohoyandou ('Head of the Elephant') in Limpopo. She is awarded the titles of goddess of biodiversity, and goddess of gender diversity. Her name is Mma-Thohoyandou (pronounced toy-an-doe) and she has the head of an elephant and the body of a sangoma. (African medicinal person)
This book is not written in an anthropomorphic style.
May Mma-Thohoyandou grant you the insight and the wisdom to understand and live by the ideology of ubuntu. I am because you are.