MAGNIFICENT SEVEN

GREAT TUSKERS OF THE KRUGER NATIONAL PARK

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Mafunyane


Mafunyane, “The Irritable One”, was the name given by the Tsonga people to this legendary elephant bull from the north-western mopane wilderness of the Kruger National Park. The most famous of the “Magnificent Seven” tuskers, his superb pair of tusks were perfectly matched - each weighed 122 lb (55,1 kg), was 19 inches (48 cm) in circumference at the lip line, and reached to the ground.

The origin of the characteristic hole in Mafunyane’s forehead was never satisfactorily explained. Possible causes such as a bullet from a rifle, a slug from a muzzle loader or a spear used by rural people in Mozambique were considered, but later ruled out. It has been suggested that this injury was more likely caused in combat by the sharp pointed tusk of a rival bull in his youth.