Elsa the Lioness

This is the most famous lion to ever walk on this planet. Her life was very short but she left a mark that will be there for many centuries to come. Elsa came in to the life of George and Joy Adamson in 1956 with her two sisters ‘Big One’ and Lustica when George was forced to kill their mother during one of his game drives. Later on, ‘Big One’ and Lustica were taken to the Rotterdam Zoo in Netherlands. Elsa remained in the care of the Adamson. A relationship soon developed and she was more of a domesticated pet that a wild lioness. Joy Adamson was closer to Elsa than anyone else and their relationship was that of equals. Joy Adamson was determined to teach Elsa how to survive in the wild and she gave it her all. With a lot of setbacks, she managed to teach her how to survive in the wild.

Elsa’s life was documented in many books and films earning her world recognition and fame. When she was three years old, she brought three cubs of her own to show the Adamsons. This was an emotionally charged moment as the Adamsons hugged and embraced Elsa and her litter. They named the cubs little Elsa, Gopa and Jespah. The four later returned to the wild but they kept in touch with the Adamsons. Elsa’s life was suddenly cut short when she was only five years old when she succumbed to an attack of babesiosis, a blood disease that mostly affects the cat’s family. Her remains were buried in the Meru National Park.

Elsa’s story shows us that there is more to the wild animals than we care to know. They too have a compassionate and softer side that we can relate to if only we take time to understand them; those animals too need love, care and affection, that we humans can coexist with them and still respect each other. Let us all will to do all we can to make this a better planet for all animals.

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