Baby Elephant Captured Throwing Adorable Temper Tantrum While Mom Responded Superbly

Jan 12, 2021 by apost team

In a video originally posted in September 2014, a mother elephant in Africa used the classic parenting technique of ignoring when she did just that to her baby who was throwing tantrums on a road among some wide-open grasslands.

Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video :-) 

Children know that a surefire way to get you to look their way is to act out! You may be familiar with tantrums from human babies, but did you know that animals of other species also suffer from a childlike temper?

You may not believe it, but elephant babies also indulge in temper tantrums from time to time. In one particular video, we’re even able to witness an incredible baby elephant in the middle of one.

The video was originally posted in September 2014 and features a herd of elephants crossing a road together. But when one baby elephant reaches the end of the way, he refuses to walk any further and dramatically falls right over into the long grass of Africa.

You have to wonder what made this tiny elephant so mad. Maybe the long walk got to him, and he’s in need of a nap? Maybe his mother said he couldn't play with his friends? Whatever the case, the tantrum is one of the most adorable things you'll see today.

An elder elephant eventually passes right by him, ignoring the temper tantrum entirely. The young elephant then throws himself in other directions, rolling all around and flailing his tiny legs into the air. It’s simply precious to watch.

His kicks continue for an extended period of time as another elder elephant approaches, which we can assume to be his mother. The mother, likely tired of seeing her child throw temper tantrums, ignores the behavior. It’s then that the baby elephant realizes he should follow her and gets up to run and meet back up with her. Crisis averted.

The adorable video highlights just how similar humans are to other animals—we are part of the animal kingdom after all. No sound was captured in the video but we can just imagine that the baby elephant is yelling its own version of "Moooooom!" and "Waaaaah!" It's truly endearing to see that a baby elephant could be so similar to a baby human—and that elephant mothers can be just like human ones too!

Elephants are truly wonderful animals. The world's largest land animal, they're native to sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. Despite their size, they're known for being very gentle and intelligent creatures, although that doesn't mean they won't defend themselves against threats. 

What's fascinating is that they live in close-knit matrilineal family groups, which means that their social system revolves around the females of the species, specifically from one family line, staying together, and who are led by a female matriarch, who often is the eldest female. When the eldest female elephant dies, her eldest daughter will take her place as the new matriarch of the group.

Elephant Voices, an organization involved in giving a voice to elephants, describes the role of the matriarch and what makes a successful one as such:

"A successful matriarch needs to be both genetically and socially well connected to all members of her family. In essence this means that she must use her social skills to show compassion and care toward all members of her extended family (not just her own daughters). She must prove to the others that she is worthy of being their leader—by her display of courage and wisdom in times of crisis, by her awesome memory of places and individuals in tough or dangerous times, by her intricate use of tactics in socially difficult situations, and through her excellent social skills to regularly and consistently build, maintain and reinforce the close bonds within her family."

Who knew that elephants had such complex social systems among their herd. What makes this even sweeter when considering the adorable video of the baby elephant having a temper tantrum is that it's all the more evident that the matriarch of the herd is simply too smart to fall for her baby's fake cries, as evidenced when she simply walks past and ignores it. Babies (from all kinds of animals) might think they're smart, but they have no idea just how intelligent their parents are—they've seen every trick in the book before!

On the other hand, male elephants have quite a different experience. Male children stay with the herd until they reach puberty, but they then leave to either live alone or in a group of male bulls. Later in their life male elephants will approach a herd of females in order to mate, but otherwise, the two sexes generally live apart. Bull herds have a hierarchical structure too, with the stronger and more experienced males at the top. The Independent describes how the mating process works for young male elephants:

"When a bull is ready to mate he will pursue an elephant family until he selects a female and she accepts his advances. Once he has mated with a cow, he’ll either return to his herd or resume his solitary existence, leaving the cow to rear the calf by herself." 

While that might sound a bit harsh, it makes sense because female elephants live in herds with their sisters, mothers, and even aunties, so there are always enough women to help bring up the baby elephants. In fact all of the other female elephants in the herd kind of "babysit" each other's children. It certainly makes childcare a no brainer!

While elephants and humans clearly have their differences, this video has shown that sometimes, elephants are just like us. Their matrilineal social groups are an interesting comparison to how humans live as well, and while that lifestyle might not work so well for humans, perhaps there are more than a few more similarities or things we could learn from this graceful and gentle creature. 

With this video in mind, it now seems that humans may have more in common with elephants than previously believed. What do you think about the adorable video? Were you a child who liked to throw temper tantrums? Tell us any hilarious temper tantrum stories regarding human or animal babies that you know in the comments, then be sure to pass this on to anyone in your life who could use a smile!

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