If you think of wildlife, you think of lions hunting antelopes, crocodiles lurking in the water waiting to attack their prey and rhinos charging at each other in a fight over a female. But there is also another maybe more human side to wildlife.
Animals are known to share the same emotions as we do. But what would an elephant do to say “I love you” and show its affection to another elephant?
They would get very close to each other and entangle their trunks!
This behavious was recently spotted by photographer Eric Webber. See the very sweet pictures below.
And photographer Eric Webber sat in a boat just 20 feet away as the Namibian elephant swam to the middle of the river using his trunk as a snorkel.
The Botswanan elephant waded in to join his neighbour for a play fight, which ended in the two animals getting their trunks in a tangle.
‘We stopped at a bend in the river when we saw a group of eight to ten elephants on the Botswana shore.
‘We watched them for a while until all but one wandered off.
‘At the same time, we noticed a lone elephant on the Namibian side of the river.
‘He walked to the riverbank, casual but deliberate, it seemed, waded in and eventually began swimming across, using his trunk like a snorkel.’
The Texas-based photographer continued: ‘The other elephant, a slightly larger juvenile male, seemed to be waiting on the Botswana shore, every so often lifting his trunk and sniffing the air.
‘They were both ignoring us and we drifted to within about 20 feet of them.
‘They sniffed each other briefly and then entwined trunks.
‘Our guide explained that this was a way for elephants, especially younger elephants, to greet each other – kind of like a handshake – and show their affection.
‘It’s also a playful game and they both seemed to enjoy it, wrapping and unwrapping their trunks, tugging a little but not much.
‘They did that a few times and then headed up the bank together and disappeared into the bush.
‘You also know that however gentle they seem, that could change very quickly, which certainly adds to the excitement of being around them.’
Picture copyright: David Webber