STATEMENT BY SOUTHBROOM CONSERVANCY:
One morning, almost a year ago, Southbroom Conservancy committee members received a phone call from our local yoga guru, Christian Kruger, to say he’d spotted a forlorn baby bushbuck (no mommy in sight) near the Southbroom Golf Club parking.
We rushed off to meet Christian and together we managed to catch the nimble little guy, who was barely a few days old. He was just so sweet and immediately won our hearts over.
Snuggled up in the car on the way to the vet, Christian (we had quickly named him after his finder) seemed calm.
Perhaps it was the dehydration he was treated for, or fear, but we hoped it was that he felt secure being with people who were caring for him.
We made a call to the Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) in Durban, who came and fetched him a couple days later.
Back at CROW, he was put under the care of Kylie Hawkins, who at the time was their antelope caretaker, and her assistant, Zoe Dougall, and renamed Andy, after an employee at CROW in charge of maintenance.
He was given hourly feeds and effectively hand-raised this way until he was weaned off milk at around six months of age.
Andy took an instant liking to another bushbuck who came in around the same time as him – a little female called Pippa. Happily, they formed a close bond and were even released together.
According to his caretakers, Andy was a very gentle little buck. In April of this year, Andy was ready to leave his carers and together with Pippa, they were released in a nature conservancy near Gillitts.
He was spotted again about two weeks later when some duiker were released into the same conservancy and seemed to be doing well.
We hope Andy and Pippa continue to grow strong, remain safe and free, make babies of their own and share with them their story of human kindness.
Our sincere thanks to Kylie, Zoe, Andrew and the rest of the team at Crow for the wonderful work you do.