The Gathering

…A jeep started to move towards the herd. Baby elephants were quickly surrounded by their mothers and aunts and guided away in a tight bunch from the approaching intruder. One female turned around, lifted her trunk and sounded a warning…



I was watching the “Gathering” at Minneriya National Park in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka. The “Gathering” is an annual congregation of hundreds of wild elephants at a 1700 year old reservoir during the drought months between July and September. The Minneriya Reservoir never completely dries out and the elephants come to drink, graze on fresh grass, frolick in the water and mate. The ‘Gathering’ at Minneriya is supposed to be the only such annual event in the world.





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