If ever nature had a gentle ɢɪᴀɴᴛ, it’s the elephant. Highly social, they have big ʙʀᴀɪɴs and big ʜᴇᴀʀᴛs and will forge deep bonds with other elephants. With proper training and good ᴛʀᴇᴀᴛment, elephants will also bond with humans. Singing a lullaby at nap time always helps – that’s certainly the case for an elephant named Faamai.
A video of Faamai falling asleep after her caretaker, Lek , sang her a Thai lullaby was published. It shows the enormous Faamai first pulling the tiny Lek towards her for what appears to be a hug, and then drowsily lying down to take a nap as the soothing lullaby washes over her.
Faamai lives at the Elephant Nature Park near Chiang Mai in northern Thailand. The park is a ʀᴇsᴄᴜᴇ and ʀᴇʜᴀʙɪʟɪᴛᴀᴛɪᴏɴ center that helps animals of all descriptions, but elephants are its real specialty. It was started by Sangdeaun Lek Chailert, a force of nature herself who has spent her whole life caring for animals. Lek, an award-winning animal conservationist who runs the sanctuary and has been advocating for elephant conservation for several years now.
It all goes back to her childhood in a small village, about two hours from where the Elephant Nature Park is today. Her grandfather was a traditional healer and while he normally dealt with people, he did sometimes ᴛʀᴇᴀᴛ sɪᴄᴋ or ɪɴᴊᴜʀᴇᴅ animals. Since then, Lek has put in decades of hard work on behalf of animals, especially elephants, and earned worldwide recognition.
Lek is an expert at singing an elephant to sleep with a lullaby. As they make their way to a shady spot, Lek sᴡᴀᴛs the elephant with a rag. This might seem a little strange – is it some kind of ᴘᴜɴɪsʜᴍᴇɴᴛ? In fact, she’s just sᴡᴀᴛᴛɪɴɢ away flies and helping the elephant cool down. Already getting drowsy, Faamai settles down on the ground. But before Lek sings to her pachyderm pal, the elephant reaches out her trunk to pull the woman in for a hug. It’s a sweet embrace, but quite not as sweet as the scene that follows it. As Lek begins her soothing song, Faamai slowly ᴅʀᴏᴘs ᴅᴏᴡɴ to the ground and stretches out on her side. Soon the pair snuggle up together for nap time. She said: “Even though Faamai is a big elephant, every time she hears a lullaby from Lek, she still falls asleep at Elephant Nature Park.”
Though there is little scientific study on whether elephants – or indeed any animals – actually respond to music, other animals have been known to enjoy a good tune, and even hum to themselves. It’s truly heartwarming to see that even if people and animals don’t speak the same language, love transcends all.