When They Saw What The Elephant Was Carrying, They Decided To Give It All The Room It….
Whether elephants understand death in the same way humans do is unknown, and probably unknowable. But elephants are social creatures, and the new research adds to the evidence that they experience some sort of emotional response when they lose one of their own.
Much has been said about their fabled memory, but it took video footage of a "funeral procession" taken out by a herd of elephants to make netizens realize that humans are not the only creatures capable of displaying complex emotions such as grief and longing.
A video posted by the Indian Forest Service officer Parveen Kaswan on Twitter showed an elephant emerging from the forest, carrying her dead calf while spectators can be seen watching the video from a distance.
"This will move you!! Funeral procession of weeping elephants carrying the dead body of a child elephant. The family just doesn't want to leave the baby," the caption of the video read.
Kaswan’s video has gone viral as stunned social media users flocked to express their amazement and sympathy for the elephants.
The footage shows an elephant emerge from some bushes holding the body of a dead baby elephant in its trunk.
The adult elephant laid its body down and guarded it as it waited for more elephants to join. Walking in a line like a funeral procession, more elephants arrived and surrounded the baby elephant.
The original elephant then lifted the baby once more, other elephants following behind.
The tear-jerking footage has since gone viral. Hundreds of others chimed in with comments ranging from sympathy for the grieving herd to arguments denouncing animal cruelty. Other comments discussed the emotional depth that elephants and other animals seem capable of.
“This is heart rending. There’s a lot that humans can learn from animals,” Twitter user Devika said.
Another user, Mohan Alembath, called it a “very touching and emotionally disturbing video.”
Elephants, among other intelligent animals, are well known for mourning for their dead. Despite the apparent evidence, many scientists caution against the belief that these rituals are motivated by heartbreak.
Watch the video below:
This will move you !! Funeral procession of the weeping elephants carrying dead body of the child elephant. The family just don’t want to leave the baby. pic.twitter.com/KO4s4wCpl0
— Parveen Kaswan, IFS (@ParveenKaswan) June 7, 2019