Sometimes it takes a big, strong father-figure to get an unruly teenage male to shape up.
And that's not just in humans. Take the situation in South Africa's Pilanesberg National Park, where the matriarchal elephants a few years ago welcomed and nurtured the very young male orphans relocated from Kruger National Park.
But once the orphans became teenagers, the female group spurned them. Like unconstrained adolescents of many species, the males, their hormones ablaze, became seriously aggressive, even killing some rhinos.
The number of elephants in Tsavo East and Tsavo West national parks in Kenya continues to grow, but more slowly than in the early 1990s.
A January aerial survey of the two parks plus the Rombo and Galana Ranches and Mkomazi Game Reserve in Tanzania (about 15,400 square miles) yielded a count of 8,100 elephants, up 729 from the 1994 count.
A January aerial survey of the two parks plus the Rombo and Galana Ranches and Mkomazi Game Reserve in Tanzania (about 15,400 square miles) yielded a count of 8,100 elephants, up 729 from the 1994 count helped in the survey.
Although culling is again on the table as one of several options for keeping the large and growing elephant population of South Africa's Kruger National Park in check, park officials say no culling will occur before next year at the earliest.
Culling, along with relocation and contraception, are alternatives spelled out in the new management strategy the National Parks Board approved in March to protect the ecosystem of the famed park.
It was a significant moment for wildlife conservation: Namibia on April 9 was permitted to auction off over 12 tons of elephants tusks, the first legal sale of ivory since a ban halted international trade nine years ago.
Four days later Zimbabwe put 20 tons of ivory on the auction block, and on April 17 Botswana sold nearly 18 tons. How much the sales brought in was not released.
The spread of tuberculosis among the lions in South Africa's Kruger National Park is raising fears that the entire lion population may be at risk. TB has occurred primarily in buffalo in the southern sector of the park, where 1,300 of Kruger's estimated 2,000 lions live. How many lions (and members of other species) have been infected is not clear, but in skin tests performed recently on about 30 thin, unhealthy lions, 90 percent tested positive for TB.