Stricken elephant succumbs to injuries

Stricken elephant succumbs to injuries

race against time: A team of vets treats the 60-year-old wild elephant but ultimately lost the fight.
race against time: A team of vets treats the 60-year-old wild elephant but ultimately lost the fight.

A 60-year-old elephant yesterday succumbed to severe injuries from gunshot wounds after being found in Kaeng Krachan National Park, Phetchaburi.

The elephant was found injured near the park's Ka Rang 3 reservoir in tambon Pa Daeng on Jan 10.

Veterinarian Patarapol Maneeorn, head of the Department of National Park's (DNP's) Wildlife Health Management Division, said the elephant had been shot 20 times in the body and head. The wounds led to severe sepsis, anaemia and inflammation of the kidney and liver.

Later on Friday, the vets cleaned the wounds and removed most of the pellets, believed to have come from a shotgun.

"Normally, elephants will sleep by leaning on a tree and lie on its right side to avoid its weight pressing against its heart. But this elephant didn't and fell into a coma which culminated in its death," he said.

Meanwhile, hundreds of elephant snares were spotted near Phu Luang Wildlife Sanctuary in Loei and Khao Phu Luang Non-Hunting Area in Nakhon Ratchasima.

A source said more than 80 wooden planks were seen hidden among bushes around a pond near Wat Pa Sri Phu Ho in Loei's Phu Luang district. Officials removed the traps and sent a volunteer group to scour the area.

On Wednesday, Chaiphon Tabtimthong, head of the Khao Phu Luang Non-Hunting Area, worked with forestry rangers to retrieve elephant traps in Nakhon Ratchasima's Pak Thong Chai and Wang Nam Khieo districts. Officials seized 36 sling traps, three rope traps and eight snap traps.

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