A newborn elephant appeared to cry for five hours after his mother rejected him at a wildlife park in China, according to Metro UK.
Soon after his birth, the mother of baby elephant Zhuang-zhuang stepped on him, Metro reported. Veterinarians removed the calf from the vicinity but then returned him to his mother's care, thinking perhaps the injury was an accident. However, Huffington Post reported Zuang-zhuang's mother attacked him again, trying to stomp him to death.
Pictures show the elephant lying beneath a blanket, eyes soaking wet and tears running into his mouth.
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"He couldn't bear to be parted from his mother and it was his mother who was trying to kill him," an unnamed zookeeper told media.
A keeper at the Shendiaoshan wild animal reserve adopted the elephant and new pictures suggest his tears have dried up.
While it's difficult to say that baby Zhuang-zhuang cried for his mother the way a human might have, there is evidence to suggest that elephants do feel complex emotions, according to PBS. For example, elephants will pause when they encounter the bones of other elephants, pick them up and feel them carefully with their trunks, as seen in this video from National Geographic.
Elephants in captivity are much more likely to commit infanticide than wild elephants, according to an international study published in the journal Science in 2008.
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