Humans tend to display certain characteristics when they are feeling awkward or out of place, and elephants are not exempt from showing the same types of behaviors. A baby elephant named Happy located in South Africa was seen swinging his trunk around when he was unable to reach the water. Onlookers suggest that this movement was probably motivated by him feeling a bit displaced due to him not being able to wallow in the water.
- A young elephant calf in South Africa was observed near a watering hole, swinging his trunk in a motion akin to a helicopter blade.
- According to elephant expert Joyce Poole, such motions are common among young elephants who are just learning to control their trunks.
- Poole suggested that the young elephant could have been signaling a desire to get into the wallow with the other elephants, yet was unsure of the social dynamics.
“As it turns out, baby elephant calves also may have behaviors that signal insecurity or uncertainty.”