"He who plants trees, plants hope"

Michael and students from Warmbaths High School plant indigenous Marula trees to counter the effects of elephants on the bush.

Michael and students from Warmbaths High School plant indigenous Marula trees to counter the effects of elephants on the bush.

"He who plants trees, plants hope". These are the words of Lucy Larmon of the Arbour Day Foundation, who inspired us to join hands with the pupils from Hoërskool Warmbad and plant indigenous Marula trees on our reserve.

Adventures with Elephants is home to Messina, Shan, Nuanedi, Chova and Chisuru, five amazing elephants, that contribute in educational interactions. They thoroughly enjoy a good snack, trees in particular! In the five years that these elephants have enjoyed their life at the centre, they have, as elephants do, left their mark on the tree life on the property.

Thanks to the generous team at Malan Seuns, who donated the 30 Marula trees, we have been able to plant new trees to compensate for those that have been eaten or damaged by our gentle tuskers. When invited to participate in the Arbour Week Activity, Hoëskool Warmbad jumped at the opportunity. They sent the top 5 students from every grade to participate in the initiative where they not only planted trees, but also enjoyed an educational presentation from Melissa Schmitt from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal about elephant feeding patterns. She also gave the eager students a demonstration of how elephants forage using their powerful scenting abilities. Melissa is doing research at AWE and is hoping to learn how elephants choose their food : through sight, or through smell?