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An Elephant calf playing in the rain. Image taken in Cabarceno Nature Park in Spain.

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The goverment of Cantabria has done an amazing job with this park which has two main roles : one related to the conservation of endangered species and the other one related to environmental education. It is also known for the semi-freedom of their animals and botanical routes. In this park life develops in the best natural environment to the animals that inhabit it. Except for food provided to them, the rest of the activities are marked by their almost total freedom and instinct. Almost all of them trigger fights and the mating season is marked by struggles for control of females and, of course, the rest of their senses are as wild as in their natural habitat.
Today, because of its sheer quality, the facilities of the nature park of Cabárceno are among the most valued by organizations that monitor the living conditions of animals. Special attention is paid to behavioral studies of the male African Elephant, verifying by non-invasive hormone profiles the reason for the highly aggressive behavior shown at certain times of the year, specially during the mating season. This phenomenon known by the name of "Musth" is when males are more dangerous and cause the majority of accidents that happen with caretakers in zoos and in Africa with the human population in rural areas.

A BIG thanks to Marina Cano for introducing me to this wonderful place.

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