Score one for the Animal Kingdom

Last week in a South African national park, a rhino poacher was killed by elephants and eaten all up by lions. Elephants are among the most intelligent and social creatures and lions are often referred to as king of the jungle. Congrats to them for ridding the world of a particularly unsavory (well maybe savory to lions) example of our own species.

The poacher was with 3 others. After a bull elephant trampled their accomplice, they drug his body to a road where they thought it would be found, and got out of there. I checked and found that not very long ago a group of 4 poachers killed an elephant in the same park (Kruger National Park) to steal the elephant’s tusks. (Might it have been the same 4 poachers?) The dead poacher’s body was not safe lying by the road. Only a skull and a pair of pants were found of his remains.

Elephants have extraordinary senses. They can also communicate over long distances. They are also among the most social of species. And they do have long memories. I would not be surprised if the killing of the poacher was an act of justice by the elephant. Now the lions may have just been hungry. Waste not, want not.

I don’t believe in karma.

But this is sure reeks of it.

I was listening to an evolutionary psychologist on NPR (at least I assume that is what he was, from the content of his dialogue). He said that elephants share a lot of the advanced social qualities that we humans have, including the quality of having friendships. Maybe the bull elephant, that was killed by the poachers not long ago, was a friend of the bull elephant that trampled the poacher.