The Making of "The King and His Entourage"
The King and His Entourage
Number 10 in my Vanishing Thunder collection, this piece highlights the magnificent elephant. As with all the drawings in this collection, 20% of all profits will be donated to charities dedicated to research and conservation efforts to help save our disappearing species.
The largest of all the land mammals, (male African elephants can weigh in at 6 tonnes!), the elephant once was abundant but numbers have dropped dramatically in the last two centuries due to the ivory trade and habitat loss.
The elephant can be divided into two sub categories, the African and Asian elephants. Both now face a very uncertain future. The African elephant now roams only 50% of their original habitat whilst the Asian elephants have been driven down to less than 15% of their original range.
It is so critical to conserve both African and Asian elephants as they play such a huge and vital role in helping to keep their ecosystems healthy as well as contributing towards tourism incomes in many areas. While a few populations are remaining stable in Africa, most are drastically declining and the Asian species is the most at risk and is officially listed as endangered.
They are in desperate need of our help. Some populations of elephants have their own armed guards to protect them but as bad as the poaching problem is, it is habitat loss that is the main threat to the species.
You can help by:
- supporting elephant research organizations
- observing elephants in the wild through sanctuaries and tours dedicated to the preservation of the species, (not the “ride on an elephant” kind or “bathe with the elephant” kind)
- don’t purchase ivory products, even old ivory
- buy coffee or palm oil products that have been certified fair trade as these commercial products have had a massive impact on the amount of elephant habitat loss. Fair trade products help give fair wages to the workers and farmers and also focus on environmentally sustainable practices.
Interesting elephant facts:
- The elephant has the longest gestation period of any mammal at 22 months! (Yikes!)
- Healthy adult elephants have no natural predators.
- Their tusks are actually teeth!
- Their trunks are amazing! Asian elephants can pick up a peanut, shell it, chuck out the shell out and then eat the nut!