"It was filled with trumpets and rumbles of joy from Emily's own herd of ex-orphaned elephant friends who had accompanied her back, all of whom were eager to carefully help the new precious bundle to its feet, nudging it gently, and using their trunks to lift the baby," Angela Sheldrick recounted in a post on the foundation's website.
Why did she return to her earliest home to give birth? Perhaps because of her own experience as a youngster, hand-reared by her human guardians, the foundation notes.
"Emily knew that in their company she and her calf would remain safe from predators and because elephants never forget she will always love and trust the keepers who have played such an important role in saving her life. Never could there be more tangible proof than her willingness to share her precious wild born babies with them, even allowing them to witness the birth of little 'Emma'."
Yes, the newborn elephant's name is Emma. And she's needed desperately. In the early 20th century, according to the World Wildlife Fund, the elephant population in Africa may have reached five million. Today, an estimated 470,000 remain.