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Robyn Morrison

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Robyn grew up in Johannesburg and every family holiday was spent exploring the Lowveld or camping around Southern Africa. Her love of nature and conservation propelled her to complete her Masters degree at the University of Edinburgh’s school of Geoscience. Although this gave ...

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10 Comments

on Elephants Tusks: Why So Different?

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Vin Beni
Guest contributor

Thanks for the background information which helped explain the circumstances of one of my favorite photos: an elephant with skew tusks.

William Paynter
Master Tracker

Robyn, thanks for continuing my education about African elephants. They are truly unique and wonderful animals.

Ian Hall
Master Tracker

Great article, seeing parks that have experience lots of poaching , you see far more tusk-less elephants . I haven’t seen a really big tusker in years …

Valmai Vorster
Master Tracker

Robin it is amazing to see these gentle giants using their tusks for forreiging. Breaking bark from the trees and so forth. They are magnificent animals and I love watching them move from one patch of grass to the next.

Gawie Jordaan
Digital Tracker

I also find a blog about elephants fascinating. I have mentioned it before,but do yourself a favour and read Hannah Mumbys book on elephants. It dives it to fascinating intricacies. One such being that elephants living in an area where they were tormented and poached seems to adapt themselves but not growing tusks anymore. An intelligible discussion!

Christa Blessing
Master Tracker

Elephants are the most fantastic animals in every respect, I think.
That they were and are hunted and poached for their tusks is a shame. That there is still such a market in China and Vietnam among others is an even greater shame. I do hope that these wonderful animals will be given a chance to survive and places like Londolozi and other such sanctuaries are so important for them.

Kara Taylor
Master Tracker

Very interesting and some great pictures that I saved in my favourites!! That quote is bang on – if elephants didn’t exist you could not invent one. Exactly like giraffes.

Francesca Doria
Master Tracker

Wonderful majestic animals. I love the photo of the first bull, I wonder how many like him are left, also in Asia. Like lions with thick manes who are much sought after, both species have the genetic weapon that helps the unwanted, the ones without manes – or tuskless. Oddly there are lioness with manes, this seems to evolve in response to the huge pressure they have in defending their pride, without the protection of adult lions. They become infertile because of the high testosterone level. Luckily nature has its remedies

Michael Fleetwood
Digital Tracker

It would be fascinating to do genetic studies on elephants and determine the relatedness between individuals, and potentially paternity and see how far bulls travel relative to where their offspring typically move

Denise Vouri
Guest contributor

This is such a informative article Robyn, and I appreciate learning more details about the wonderful and amazing elephants. I had wondered why certain elephants have skewed tusks and now I know. Do you have information as to why there are big tuskers in Kenya/Tanzania but not in other places? Also. At what age do elephants begin to grow tusks?
The images that were selected for this blog are beautiful so thank you for including them.

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