25/07/2024

How Does An Elephant Scratch An Itch He Just Can’t Reach

How Does An Elephant Scratch An Itch He Just Can’t Reach

There’s nothing worse than having an itch you can’t scratch and judging by these images it seems elephants feel the same.

We can all relate to that insatiable itch that we cannot quite reach.  Similar to humans, elephants also get itches they cannot reach with their trunk, tusks or legs; which need satisfying! To relieve an itch, elephants use stumps, rocks, trees and termite mounds.  Often when you are in the bush you will see one of these, looking well-polished from regular use by elephants.

Like all animals, elephants need regular grooming and cleaning. Whether that is taking a mudbath, sandbath or a swim.  This grooming and cleaning helps to remove insects and parasites, such as ticks and flies, which can be the cause of a good itch. It is funny to watch an elephant rub itself on all angles on an object to alleviate a good itch.  As humans, we can relate to this – it is the same as us rubbing our back on a door frame.These funny images show the resourceful elephant crouching down to scratch its bum on an ant hill. A favourite location for scratching, with multiple elephants utilising. Probably not the best choice of scratching post, the elephant was lucky not to be left with ants in its pants.

The pictures were taken by photographer Usha Harish while photographing the elephants in Amboseli National Park in Kenya. The elephant’s trunk just couldn’t reach to scratch

Usha, 36, said: “They were completely surprise shots and not planned at all. There were a group of elephants retreating to the bushes after being in the swamp, drinking, basking and dusking the whole day.  Another female elephant followed her and there was a moment where both wanted to scratch themselves together.”

 

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