There’s a Potted Giraffe in my Garden
Common Factors, Shona, Graves, Cooking Pots and Giraffes
In Tall Tales of Africa, we asked the question, “what do giraffes and cooking pots have in common?” And because I know you’ve been eagerly awaiting the answer, I’m going to tell you just what giraffes and cooking pots share.
The Shona people are Zimbabwe’s largest indigenous group. Traditionally, Shona deceased will be buried in rural areas near the family homestead. About a year after the burial, a special ceremony is held. The family goes to the graveside with a pot of beer, a wooden plate of snuff and a prepared pot of Sadza neNyama, (pap and stew). The beer is poured over the grave and the other items are left on it, with the pap and stew still in the pot.
After a while, these pots (that once held pap and stew) are lying out in the bush. Any animal wandering past can step on them, knock them, and kick them, or whatever. Usually that’s all that happens but when the animal is a giraffe and it steps in the pot, the pot often stays put! Because it’s a perfect fit, this happens a lot more than you may think. Ask the Vets.
It’s a sad fact that a giraffes’ big foot and a largish cooking pot are, as I said, a perfect fit. And without opposable thumbs and access to tools, it’s very hard for a giraffe to take a cooking pot off it’s own foot.
That’s when the experts are called in. Here we show you in pictures, what it takes to gain a giraffe’s cooperation and remove the offending pot.
Here’s How to Capture Giraffes Wearing Cooking Pots
First find your giraffe and shoot her with a tranquilizer dart
Then get the giraffe to lie down someplace comfy
Make Sure He/She’s Under Control.
Getting to Grips with the Problem
Well and Truly Stuck.
Sometimes the Pot is there for a long time and causes damage.
The pot’s gone and the vet can now treat the leg.
Time for wakey-wakey
Hey, she’s up and headed back to her mate, who’s been waiting patiently.
In case you don’t know, giraffe can kick forward as accurately as they can backwards. Many a lion has found this out to their detriment. Another day in the life of an African Wildlife Conservation team. Another success story, you can’t win ’em all but when you do, it’s wonderful and that’s what cooking pots and giraffes have in common folks…