The body of one of Africa's most wall-known elephants -- Ahmed -- is being stuffed by taxidermists in Kenya.
GV (January 1974) Ahmed the Elephant (alive)
SV Elephant skull with tusks attached on grass
GV Men manhandling rib-cage
SV Pan Man shaking tusks to detach them from skull (2)
GV Riboage and elephant bones propped against wall
CU Nerve removed from and of tusk
CU Workman tilt down to cleaning skin
SV Man scraping skin
SV & CU Man turning over empty skin of elephant foot (2)
CU Man scraping skin
SV Man scraping skin and man picks up skin of trunk
CU Man working on skin
CU End of elephant's trunk held up for inspection
GV Tilt down men cleaning tusks
CU Man scraping tissue from tusk(2)
GV African workers look on
CU End of tusk with pen marking where bullet lodged
CU African worker holding tusk
GV Foreman and insurance man measuring tusk (2)
GV Pan Workers carrying away tusk for weighing
SV Tusk hung on balance as insurance man looks on (2)
SV & CU Foreman and insurance man examine balance showing 62 kilos
S Insurance man taking notes pan to tusk
GV Exterior sign 'Zimmerman taxidermists'
GV Group supporting two tusks
Initials SC/2113 SC/2200
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Background: The body of one of Africa's most wall-known elephants -- Ahmed -- is being stuffed by taxidermists in Kenya.
Ahmed died in Kenya's Marsabit National Park on the 17th of January this year. He was estimated to have been 70 years old, and was the only animal protented by presidential decree.
President Kenyatta forbade anyone to harm Ahmed -- even if he wandered into places where elephant hunting was legal. He was chosen as the symbol for Kenya's 1974 Conservation Year. President Kenyatta has ordered that Ahmed be preserved, and displayed in Nairobi Museum.
Ahmed's most attractive features were his enormous tusks. Each one weighs 136 pounds (62 kilos) and stands almost 10 feet (about 3 metres) high.
Stuffing Ahmed will be long job -- it's estimated to take about six months, and post about 6000 pounds sterling. The tusks have even been insured for 24,000 pounds.
SYNOPSIS: Ahmed the elephant -- Africa's most well-known animal -- is dead. An infection in one of the elephant's legs finished him off, and he died on the seventeenth of January.
President Kenyatta of Kenya has ordered that Ahmed's body be preserved, and a firm of taxidermists near Nairobi have just started the mammoth task. It will be a long job, taking about six months, and costing about six thousand pounds.
The elephant that became a legend lies in pieces around the taxidermists workshop. Ahmed was estimated to have been seventy years old when he died. He could have lived longer, but for the small infection that ended his protected life in the wild.
Ahmed was the only animal protected by presidential decree. President Kenyatta forbade anyone to harm him -- even if he wandered into places where elephant hunting was legal. During his lifetime, armed guards ensured that his tough skin would never be fatally pierced by a bullet.
Kenya's Marsabit National Park was Ahmed's home, and his wanderings were watched closely by the park authorities. The elephant was a great temptation to poachers.. his tusks were so heavy that Ahmed frequently rested them on the ground -- to take the weight off his neck muscles.
Accorded the security normally reserved for leading dignitaries, Ahmed, and his enormous tusks, survived the ivory collectors. There were some attempts on his life during his isolation at Marsabit, and the scare still show.
The tusks wee once valued at almost three thousand pounds each, but they would have fetched almost double that amount on the ivory market. They've been insured for twenty four thousand pounds, and are being carefully checked.
Speculation was rife during Ahmed's lifetime as to the weight of those tusks .. could Ahmed have claimed a world record for them? The official weigh-in was disappointing -- the tusks' combined weight was only three hundred and seventy pounds. The heaviest elephant tusks -- four hundred and twenty pounds -- are in a London Museum.
The tusks were found to be almost ten feet long ... not a record, but still something to put lesser elephants to shame.