Friday, 16 March 2012

Elephant No. 166: Pre-Fab Cardboard

I've been saving this one for a day when I felt like doing anything other than making an elephant. Today is that day.

I've already covered the history of cardboard in my ridiculous corrugated cardboard experiment, and pop-ups in my less ridiculous pop-up card post, so all I'm going to do today is make the elephant that came in an "Adventure Safari" kit I bought for a couple of dollars. It's actually a very good kit for the price, as it includes seven animals, an oasis and a shade tree, in both printed, and colour-your-own versions.

This is the kit I bought.

This is what the pre-printed elephant page looked like.

These are the instructions.

This is what it looks like when all the folds have been made. Reminds me a bit of a flying squirrel.

This is what it looks like when it has been assembled, which basically consists of popping three tabs into slots in the head, the chest, and the back legs. Now it reminds me of a giant anteater.

And this is what it looks like romping against the surprisingly acceptable backdrop that came with the kit. I even made the oasis and the shade tree.

I felt a bit like I was cheating today, but I actually quite like this elephant. I may even make the rest of the animals in the kit. And I still have the colour-your-own elephant for another I-don't-wanna kind of day.

Elephant Lore of the Day
Since the kit came with a whole bunch of animals, I started to wonder what animals elephants like best—besides other elephants, of course.

I couldn't actually find anything that told me what an elephant's natural friends might be. To a certain extent, it appears that elephants, having no significant predators, are willing for the most part to simply live and let live. Elephants have formed lasting friendships with dogs, sheep and humans, and elephants will often go to the rescue of other species, even when that species turns around and attacks.

A case in point was the female African elephant that went to the aid of a baby rhinoceros stuck in the mud. When the mother rhinoceros saw the elephant near her baby, the rhinoceros attacked the elephant—and kept attacking. Despite repeated attacks from the rhinoceros, the elephant kept trying to help the baby rhinoceros, until eventually driven off by the baby's mother.

Most animals appear to be afraid of elephants, simply because of their size. However, the elephant does have a few natural enemies. Cheetahs, lions and hyenas will attack elephants that are old, sick, or small, but do not tend to hunt elephants, particularly when the elephants are in herds. Sadly, the elephant's greatest natural enemy—and one that will quite willingly hunt and kill them—is man.

Herd of African elephants with baby.

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