A BABY elephant born so prematurely it couldn’t reach its mother to feed, has been rescued and transported by helicopter to a Kenyan wildlife trust.

A BABY elephant rescued by conservation workers was transferred to its new home via helicopter.

The elephant was born prematurely, which meant it was unable to reach his mother’s teats, and was therefore starving.

The tiny baby elephant was starving. Picture: Escape Foundation/Caters News

It was rescued from the Maasai Mara National Reserve in southern Kenya by the Mara Elephant Project.

The elaborate rescue was co-ordinated on a number of fronts, involving national park workers and staff from the wildlife trust.

The transfer took place in November, with rescuers realising the quickest and safest way to transport the elephant to its new home, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Nairobi, would be via helicopter.

The baby elephant was so small it could be lifted by one man. Picture: Escape Foundation/Caters News

Aisle or window seat? Picture: Escape Foundation/Caters News

A spokesperson for the Mara Elephant project said: “The project protects elephants to conserve the greater Mara ecosystem.

“Intervening with abandoned baby elephants is something we do on a regular basis, so we know to stay calm and collected.

“This was, however, the first time we’ve had an elephant in our helicopter. They are usually slightly too big for the trip.

The spokesperson added that most often the rescuers are helping elephants whose mother has died due to human-elephant conflict, which is what made this case so unusual.

The baby bush elephant was given the name Panya and is now being cared for — and fed — by a team of workers.

Once it reached its new home, the elephant was given fluids to help it recover. Picture: Escape Foundation/Caters News

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