Khanyisa’s Story

Khanyisa is a rare albino elephant calf that was found trapped in a snare with severe injuries, in January 2020. Her wounds indicated that she had been trying desperately to free herself for a few days. She had severe lacerations across her neck and cheeks and the top of her right ear was cut. She was alone, with no sign of her herd anywhere. From the beginning, Khanyisa settled in quickly at HERD, with Lammie, our loyal resident companion sheep.

Feeding her was more complicated than usual due to her mouth injuries, but the team managed to find the correct angles to help her drink successfully. Our care team, together with wildlife veterinarian Dr. Peter Rogers, worked tirelessly for three months to ensure the calf’s wounds were treated and healed successfully.

Once her wounds had fully healed, the gradual integration with the herd began, starting with Jabulani, then Lundi and eventually the entire herd. Lundi was chosen as Khanyisa’s adoptive mother and took on the role beautifully.

Khanyisa has gone from strength to strength since her rescue. Her wounds have healed and her bonds with the herd have deepened naturally. She spends sunrise to sunset out in the wild of the reserve with the elephants, and returns to the homestead with the herd for the night. She will remain dependent on milk formula from our carers until she is weaned at approximately five years of age.

This special elephant gets her name from her unique appearance as an albino, as Khanyisa means “Light” or “Sunshine” in the local Shona language.

Khanyisa continues to be a ray of light to us and many of her loyal supporters around the world!

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South Africa



By becoming a foster parent, you’re contributing to the care of your adopted elephant. You’re helping us to provide your adopted elephant with everything they need to be healthy and happy. This includes daily supplemental food like fresh bana grass and lucerne, as well as cleaning and maintenance of the elephant homestead. If your adopted elephant needs any medical support, your contribution will go towards providing them with medicine and veterinary care.


We offer different adoption levels. You can choose to adopt by making a once-off donation or by making recurring monthly donations.


You can adopt an elephant yourself, or you can gift an adoption to a loved one.


All foster parents receive:

  • ● A personalised printable certificate
  • ● An anatomy guide for your adopted elephant
  • ● Access to a private Facebook group for foster parents
  • ● Quarterly updates on your adopted elephant
  • ● A digital birthday card


The higher your adoption level, the more special benefits you will receive. For example, Gold and Platinum foster parents receive unseen photos of their adopted elephant each quarter. For more details on benefits, please contact


Your adoption is the equivalent of:


Marula Bronze Silver Gold Platinum

Food for one day of each month

Food for three to four days of each month, or

Food for one week of each month, or

Food for two weeks of each month, or

Food for most days of each month, or

One medication each year

Multiple medications each year, or

One medication each month, or

Multiple medications each month, or

One high-cost medication each year

Multiple high-cost medications each year, or

One high-cost medication each month, or

One veterinary visit each year

Multiple veterinary visits each year

View other Orphans


Male | Born: 2023


Female | Born: 2015


Female | Born: 2008

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We rely on incredible people like you to keep us going. Every cent counts, and no contribution is too small. HERD relies on public funding to cover the operational costs to care for and support elephant orphans and the rescued herd, so we really appreciate your support.

Elephant Tales Blog

Want to hear the latest and greatest stories about what the elephants are up to? No two days are the same, and they always amaze us with their distinctive personalities and acceptance of one another. Follow us this way for all the latest stories of what’s happening at HERD.