Some pets are universal – dogs and cats, for instance, are found in households around the globe. Then there are certain pets that are pretty specific to certain regions – Central and South America have monkeys, and President Teddy Roosevelt had a bear. In Southeast Asia and India, they (occasionally) have elephants. A person who rides elephants is called a mahout, and the relationship he has with his elephant is a powerful one.
Today’s Interesting Photo of the Day is a half-underwater shot of an elephant swimming in deep water, carrying his mahout on his truncated tusks. The image was created by photographer Caesar Naldi in the waters of the Andaman Islands, south of Burma.
The mahout is Nazroo, who was out swimming with his elephant Rajan when this photo was taken. Although elephant training tactics are often known to be cruel, there are a vast number of mahouts who form an incredible lifelong bond with their elephant. Elephants by nature are very loyal and affectionate creatures, and will often die if faced with the loss of their mahout, who they grow very devoted to and often outlive.
The photograph was featured in National Geographic magazine as well.
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