Dida, a Kenyan elephant said to be Africa’s largest tusker has died.
It was found dead within the Tsavo National Park where it lived.
In an update on Tuesday, November 1, Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) officials announced that the elephant died due to old age.
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The tusker which was famed for her long tusks was believed to be between 60 and 65 years old – the upper reaches of life expectancy for an elephant living in the wild.
“Tsavo has suffered the loss of a best-loved matriarch and the greatest repository of many decades worth of knowledge,” KWS said in a statement.
KWS noted that Dida was responsible for teaching the herds survival tactics such as leading them to sources of water and pasture.
“Dida was a truly an iconic matriarch of Tsavo and a great repository of many decades worth of knowledge. She shepherd her herd through many seasons and challenging times
“She served as both the subject to various documentaries and an iconic tourist attraction,” KWS said.
Elsewhere, in 2020, another iconic elephant, Big Tim, died in Mada area of Amboseli National Park in Kenya from natural causes aged 50 years.
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Tim was known for his long, enormous tusks, which nearly grazed the ground he walked on – each of his tusks are said to have weighed up to 45 kilograms.
Post-mortem examination results showed that Tim died from a twisted gut with his remains transported for preservation at the National Museums of Kenya for exhibition and education purposes.
Authorities say that Big Tim survived death several times in his life.
In one instance, he was infamously speared three times by locals after storming several farms according to records.
Another incident occurred in 2018 at the age of 48, Tim is said to have been stranded after being stuck in a swamp within Amboseli.
It took the efforts of Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) officers to rescue him.
“After Tim survived death three times when he was speared, we collared him to monitor his movements. However, one day Tim came near the KWS offices and dropped the collar,” former Amboseli senior warden Kenneth Ole Nashuu
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