Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Firms using animals in ads to donate to wildlife charities: UN


Companies that use animals to market their brands will now be required by United Nations Development Programme to raise funds for wildlife conservation.

In the new initiative dubbed Lion's Share, the corporate world in all UN member states will be expected to make voluntary contributions every time an animal appears in their adverts.

The money raised will be channelled towards conservation of wildlife habitats and animal welfare.

Advertisers like Kenya Commercial Bank which uses a lion in its logo or Nakumatt chain stores that uses elephant symbol are being asked to contribute 0.5 per cent of their media spending for each TV, print or online marketing campaign featuring an animal.

The 330ml of Tusker beer bottles. The East African Breweries Limited uses the elephant to market its Tusker brand of beer. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

The campaign argues that whereas many corporate bodies use animals to advance their commercial brands and make profits, little or nothing is channelled back to the wildlife, most of which continue to be endangered due to human activities.

Conservation

The Lion's Share Fund gives brands the opportunity to take urgent and significant action to play their role in protecting wildlife conservation and animal welfare by raising money, beyond corporate social responsibility, in a more sustainable way.

Kenya Commercial Bank Group CEO Joshua Oigara (left) and Chief Business Officer and Managing Director Samuel Makome during a media beefing at Kencom House in Nairobi on September 28, 2016. The bank has a lion in its logo. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

According to Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, the director of UNDP's bureau for policy and programme support, the initiative is a coalition of the willing and anyone who feels compassionate enough to give back to the wildlife, they are using to generate profits.

"Everyone is commercially abusing the wildlife to advertise their products from airlines, hotels, banks, manufacturing firms, but despite this profit-making significance, animals do not always get the support they deserve" he said in an interview with the Nation.

Mr Dieye explained: "We're not compelling firms to contribute to Lion's Share Fund but rather creating moral compassion and awareness on the need to support wildlife conservation".

He says the new fund aims to raise US$100 million annually in the next three years. The money will be invested in initiatives and programmes that benefit animal welfare, conservation and their environments worldwide.

A statue of an elephant stands in front of Nakumatt Supermarket in Eldoret on November 4, 2017. The troubled chain uses an elephant to market its services and decorate its premises. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Statistics compiled by UN indicate that, advertisers worldwide spend about US$300 billion and the campaigners think the 0.5 per cent is a tiny fraction of the global budget that will see them raise a minimum of US$100 million annually.

Out of the spending, animals appear in approximately 20 per cent of all advertisements in the world, yet despite this, animals do not always receive the support they deserve.

"We intend to raise the amount from advertisers whom we expect to contribute 0.5 per cent of their media spend every time an animal is featured in an advertisement," the UN official explained
Reversing deaths

This, he said will go a long way in reversing the deaths of wildlife species in danger of extinction globally by restoring their depleted habitats and enhancing their protection measures.

Two weeks ago, UNDP signed a major partnership agreement with global outdoor advertising firm JCDecaux Group, the latest partner to join the Lion's Share Fund campaign.

The deal was signed during the fourth session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in Nairobi, which brought together more than 4,700 delegates including six heads of state, environment ministers from 88 countries, business leaders and civil society representatives from across the world.

Campaigns

JCDecaux, which operates in 4,031 cities across more than 80 countries—20 of them in Africa and reaches a daily audience of over 410 million people, will play a key role in the initiative, running campaigns of the Lion's Share across the year.

"This latest partnership with JCDecaux marks a continuing evolution of this innovative fund, which is providing an opportunity for media companies to join and to help preserve and protect biodiversity across the globe" said Mr Dieye.

The Assistant UN secretary-general explained that animals appear in approximately 20 per cent of all advertisements in the world, yet despite this, they do not always receive the support they deserve.

"Each year, we lose 10,000 species to extinction – which is an astonishing 1,000 times the natural rate. This crisis may seem insurmountable at times because its scale feels too large for anyone to have a real impact. But this crisis is reversible, and nature can thrive again. The Lion's Share is harnessing this hope," he added.

Big global names in advertising including Mars Incorporated, advertising heavyweight Clemenger BBDO and leading global measurement and data analytics company Nielsen have partnered with UNDP to drive the campaign.

UNDP will host the fund's Secretariat, which will support the overall operations of the fund while JCDecaux will help raise awareness worldwide about the crucial and urgent agenda of wildlife conservation.

Mr Jean-S├ębastien Decaux, the CEO of JCDecaux said the Lion's Share global initiative underlines their commitment to preserve and protect biodiversity across the world and the campaign is an opportunity to contribute towards the United Nations' sustainable goals.

Awareness

Mr Decaux who is charge of Southern Europe, Belgium, Luxembourg, Africa, Israel regions said as the leading advertising company, they are delighted to use the power and reach of marketing portfolio to raise people's awareness and to help create positive and sustainable changes.

"We are proud to support the Lion's Share fund in its mission to promote wildlife conservation and restoring their habitats across the globe, which are key to achieving UN's sustainable goals 14 and 15, on Life under water and on land, respectively" said the CEO.

In September last year, media firm the Economist which publishes The Economist, joined the campaign and pledged to contribute 0.5 per cent of the amount it receives from advertisers featuring animals in their commercials in the group's publications.

"We are pleased to partner with the UNDP as the inaugural publishing partner for the Lion's Share initiative, because it aligns with our brand values," said Chris Stibbs, CEO of The Economist Group.

Since the Lion's Share Fund was launched in June 2018, a total of US$15 million (Sh1.5 billion) has been raised mainly from corporates in Europe and the United States.

The fund's steering committee held its first meeting last week in Nairobi during the UNEA conference, where they discussed and agreed on a five-year investment plan, and how to spend the $15 million raised so far.

Each year, according to UN data, the world loses 10,000 species to extinction—a staggering 1,000 times the natural rate.

In Africa, the fund will provide a grant to improve critical radio systems for law enforcement officers protecting wildlife in Mozambique's Niassa National Reserve.

Other key investments include providing a grant to help secure land for endangered orangutans, elephants and tigers in North Sumatra in Indonesia, a programme to support endangered jaguars in Latin America and to address the loss of tigers and their habitat in Asia.

In the next six years, the Lion's Share fund aims to contribute significantly to issues such as saving the world's remaining 4,000 wild tigers, including by re-establishing their fragmented habitats and helping strengthen tiger-friendly livelihoods for people living in tiger habitats.

Protecting elephants and rhinos from poaching by combating the illegal trade in ivory and rhino horn including through innovative anti-poaching technologies and reducing the illegal trade of birds, fish and reptiles and other exotic pets by reducing the supply and demand for illegal pets through new research and investigation, awareness raising and enforcement.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/magazine/Firms-using-animals-in-ads-to-donate-to-wildlife-charities/434746-5043436-rdk1arz/index.html

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Elephant in the village: Jambi villagers struggle to keep giant animals away


The last time Usman and other residents of Semerantihan village in Sumay district, Tebo regency, Jambi, had a good night’s sleep without worrying that a herd of Sumatran elephants would roam into their residential area was four years ago.

Semerantihan village is located within the 508,000-hectare Bukit Tigapuluh ecosystem that stretches from Riau to Jambi. The ecosystem is considered to be the last sanctuary for several endangered species, including the Sumatran orangutan, tiger and elephant.

Every night, villagers go on patrol around the village to drive away the elephants and prevent them from entering their local plantation. Usman said a herd consisting of at least 30 elephants regularly circled the village.

“These elephants like to come into our plantation. They eat or stomp on our crops,” Usman told The Jakarta Post recently.

Even though they are suffering from losses as a result of the damaged crops, Semerantihan villagers can do little to change the situation. The Sumatran elephant was declared an endangered species by both the international community and the Indonesian government.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) included the species on its red list, calling it “critically endangered”. Meanwhile, the elephant is also included on a list of protected animals in a 2018 Environment and Forestry Ministerial Regulation on protected flora and fauna.

Villagers found killing the endangered elephant can be prosecuted for violating the 1990 law on natural resources and ecosystem conservation. Under the law, villagers can face up to five years’ imprisonment and Rp 100 million (US$7,005) in fines for killing the mammal.

Aware of the consequences of poaching, the village residents have on several occasions tried to scare off the animals by making loud noises.

However, their attempts are often fruitless, as the elephants regularly return to the village and local plantation, presumably to find food, leaving the villagers frustrated.

“Our ancestors have lived here for dozens or even hundreds of years, but we never heard a story about elephants from our parents,” Usman said, adding that the residents lacked knowledge on how to drive the elephants away.

Udin, a resident of Suo-Suo village – located about a two-hour drive from Semerantihan – referred to the elephants “harmful pests” for destroying not only plantations but also a hut belonging to one of the residents.

“I don’t know how, but we have to drive these animals away,” Udin said.

Wisma Wardhana from the Cakrawala volunteer organization said a thorough examination on where the elephants came from and their numbers and habitat was necessary.

“Therefore, authorities and residents can decide on proper regulation and treatment in the area,” Wisma said.

It is common for elephants to enter villages in Sumatra. The rampant conversion of forests and land into plantations is thought to be the main cause of human-elephant conflicts across the country.

Data from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia in 2015 showed that Indonesia had the highest number of human-elephant conflicts in Asia.

“The conflicts are not only damaging to the [human] community but also threaten the elephants’ existence, because the solution to such conflicts often tends to harm the elephants,” WWF wrote.

Jambi Natural Resources Conservation Agency head Rahmat Saleh Simbolon said the agency and the two international institutions had been working for several years to map out the elephants’ migratory routes.

“The only way to prevent these animals from expanding their roaming area is to install wire fences,” Rahmat said.

The agency previously erected a 15-kilometer electrified wire fence and is planning to add another 10 km of fences.

“The electricity is not harmful to the elephants, other animals and humans due to its low voltage. It will only give a small shock,” the agency head said.

In addition to adding fences, the agency formed working groups in nearby villages that consists of residents.

“They have been educated on how to drive the elephants away,” Rahmat said, adding that it should also educate villagers on the endangered status of the species. (kuk)

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2019/03/13/elephant-in-the-village-jambi-villagers-struggle-to-keep-giant-animals-away.html

Sunday, March 03, 2019

Wild elephant gives birth in Way Kambas National Park


A female wild elephant named Meli gave birth to a male calf in the Way Kambas National Park (TNWK) in East Lampung regency, Lampung, on Tuesday, Antara reported.

Park chief Subakir said the calf was born at 3:50 a.m. at elephant respond unit (ERU) Braja Harjosari camp, adding that it had been sired by a male elephant named Rendi.

The calf weighed 113 kilograms and was 84 centimeters long.

It was the second elephant calf born at the national park this year. In January, a female elephant named Wulan gave birth to a female calf at the camp.

Since 2019, TNWK has welcomed 14 new elephants.

Subakir said the increase in elephant births in the past four years was supported by several factors, such as clean drinking water, bathing places and wells, saying that these facilities were assisted by state-owned lender Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

“Besides food, clean water also determines the health of elephants,” he said. (jes/kes)

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://worldtimes.news/wild-elephant-gives-birth-in-way-kambas-nationalpark/

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Fourteen herds of elephants in search of food in Aceh: conservationist


Lhokseumawe, N Aceh, (ANTARA News)- At least 14 herds of wild Sumatran elephants have been wandering in search of food in the areas of districts such as Tamiang, Pidie, Central Aceh, Bener Meriah, and Biruen, a conservationist said.

According to the Head of the Lhokseumawe Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA), Dedi Irvansyah, here on Tuesday evening, around four up to five herds were found wandering around the forest areas of East Aceh and Tamiang Districts.

In North Aceh District, there were three herds of these herbivorous animals, while in the districts of Central Aceh, Bener Meriah, and Bireun, about four herds of wild elephants were also observed, he stated.

Meanwhile, in Pidie Jaya and Pidie Districts, two herds were reportedly observed, he noted, adding that each of the herds consisted of 15 to 20 wild animals.

Three herds of wild Sumatran elephants were also found wandering in search of food in the areas of North Aceh District`s Cot Girek, Matangkuli, and Langkahan Subdistricts.

One of the elephants, identified as Rita, has been fitted with a GPS collar device to track it easily, he remarked.

The elephants have ravaged local residents` agricultural lands, Irvansyah quoted the people`s reports as saying.

"Maybe, inside the herd, the female elephant would have been fitted with the tracking device, and there may be other female mature elephants that have separated from their main herd. These animals then form a new herd, which is likely related to their efforts to search for food," he explained.

The wild Sumatran elephants in Aceh Province have again attracted public attention after a herd of these jumbo animals recently went on a rampage in Negeri Antara Village, Pintu Rimbee Sub-district, Bener Meriah District.

The wild elephants not only ravaged local farmers` agricultural lands but also attacked a trained elephant named Ida on Feb 11, 2019. As a result, the 40-year-old elephant`s legs were wounded.

Reporting by Mukhlis

Editing by Rahmad Nasution

Editor: Suharto

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://en.antaranews.com/news/122378/fourteen-herds-of-elephants-in-search-of-food-in-aceh-conservationist

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Center for Training of Wild Elephants in Riau, Indonesia


Description

 Sumatera elephant population which continues to reduce government building elephant training center in siak, riau district. the area of the raya forest area also provided sumatera elephant tourism object.

In this location there are many 17 conservation elephant exchange. riau natural resources conservation building this area to protect the sumatera elephant from the wild hunt.

Elephant population in riau continuously reduced because of the way of wild hunting and illegal logging. sumatera elephant hundrers killed these animals to be take its origin, currently, elephant population in riau is only remained 400 economic spreads in amount of district in riau.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.newsflare.com/video/271982/animals/center-for-training-of-wild-elephants-in-riau-indonesia

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

In Sumatra, a lone elephant leads rescuers on a cat-and-mouse chase

  • Conservationists recently tried to relocate a wild elephant from one forest on the island of Sumatra to another.
  • The elephant’s original home, the Bukit Tigapuluh forest, has been heavily fragmented by human activity, pushing the animals within into nearby villages.
  • The elephant, a female named Karina, is the last remaining member of her herd.
TABIR, Indonesia — Several hours into the search, Karina was still hiding, deep in the undergrowth, far from the road.

The mission, led by a team of forest rangers, police officers and conservationists from Indonesia and abroad: find and sedate Karina, a female elephant who was the last remaining member of her herd. The team meant to relocate Karina from an area near the Bukit Tigapuluh forest to Harapan, another rainforest some 250 kilometers (155 miles) to the southeast. Karina had wandered from Bukit Tigapuluh into the nearby Tabir area after the rest of her herd was killed.

If successful, Karina would be the first female elephant brought to Harapan from Bukit Tigapuluh, a once-pristine rainforest that has become perilous for Sumatran elephants (Elephas maximus sumatranus), a critically endangered species. The rescuers also hoped to relocate a pair of male elephants.

Tabir isn’t safe for elephants, and Bukit Tigapuluh isn’t much better, according to translocation team leader Alexander Mossbrucker, a conservationist from the Frankfurt Zoological Institute who was involved in the rescue attempt.

Ideally, he said, an elephant population of 100 would need 2,000 square kilometers (770 square miles) of habitat to roam in. In Bukit Tigapuluh, less than a quarter of that remains for around 150 elephants.

The destruction of elephants’ forest homes is a scenario playing out across Sumatra.

From 1990 to 2010, old-growth rainforest on the island shrank by 40 percent, driven by the encroachment of industrial agricultural and roads; thousands of square kilometers continue to be lost each year.

Due to poaching, habitat loss and conflict between people and elephants that wander into their villages — an increasingly common phenomenon as the forest shrinks — just 2,400 Sumatran elephants are thought to remain in the wild, according to the WWF.

High levels of human-elephant conflict “will eventually lead to the elephant’s extinction, if nothing is done,” Mossbrucker told Mongabay.

For her part, Karina had managed to avoid humans, surviving by hiding in overgrown farmland during the day and feeding on crops at night. But while the elusiveness saved her life, it’s made it hard to find her for the team of conservationists from the International Elephant Project, a collaboration that has raised more than $30,000 for her relocation.

At one point, the team managed to sedate Karina and fit her with a GPS tracking device. The plan was to monitor her movements and mobilize for the rescue when Karina moved closer to the road.

Yet even with a team of elephants from Minas Elephant Training Center in nearby Riau province brought in to keep her calm, the team’s efforts at capture only drove her deeper into the forest and into trickier terrain. After several days, the team decided it would not be safe to tranquilize and transport her.

Instead, they turned their attention to the two male elephants, hoping that in the meantime, Karina might make herself more available. Eventually, they were able to capture one of the bulls, called Lucky Dudung.

Unfortunately, Lucky’s transition has not been as smooth as was hoped.

“Lucky has been on the move since he was released [at Harapan], covering large distances,” Mossbrucker says. “[H]e even left Harapan forest several times to roam into adjacent areas. Only the presence of field rangers could prevent any unwanted accidents.”

The situation parallels the challenge found in countries like Sri Lanka, where large-scale relocation efforts have been stymied by elephants returning “home” — causing new problems with humans along the way.

According to Mossbrucker, relocations are useful on a case-by-case basis, “by helping establish genetic diversity that is needed for healthy population growth.”

At Harapan, Karina would join a herd of six females and Haris, a young male who was brought from Bukit Tigapuluh three years ago.

“Before Haris was translocated, no bull was present in the area, and therefore there was no offspring at all. Now there is a chance for natural breeding to occur, and with the translocation of more animals, the risk of inbreeding depression could be reduced,” Mossbrucker said.

“Karina would improve the herd’s genetic diversity.”

On a larger scale, however, the answer to the plight of the elephant is to protect more habitat.

“The core problem in Sumatra is the limited availability of suitable elephant habitat, and the ongoing destruction and fragmentation of the few remaining areas that currently still provide habitat, is not tackled well enough,” Mossbrucker said.

With a second attempt to relocate Karina set for some time this winter, the relocation team is closely tracking her movements. They are as determined as ever to get her to safety.

“We know [Karina] was once part of a vibrant, matriarchal herd,” says the International Elephant Project.

“She’s now alone… Her entire herd has now been killed.

“We will not give up until she’s in safe and with other elephants.”

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://news.mongabay.com/2019/01/in-sumatra-a-lone-elephant-leads-rescuers-on-a-cat-and-mouse-chase/

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Wild elephants drag elderly man from pineapple hut and trample him to death


A man’s body has been found crushed to death outside his pineapple storage hut near Khao Ang Ruenai Wildlife sanctuary, in central Thailand.

Wild elephants – notorious for coming down the mountain to the village in search of food – are suspected of having dragged the man from his hut and stamping him to death to get access to his pineapples.

Police and park officials were informed by a villager that he had heard elephants as they entered the village and then a man shouting in fear. The incident happened on Sunday night.

73 year old Ek Homhuan’s body was discovered 20 metres from his small hut, where he decided to sleep to guard his crop against thieves, both human and animal. Police found evidence at the scene which indicated elephants may have pulled Ek from the hut using their trunks.

Examination of the body found severe bruising all over and that his skull had been crushed. His body has now been sent to Tha Takiab Hospital for a full autopsy.

Reports vary but say that two to three elephants could have been responsible for the attack, but had returned to the sanctuary after feeding.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://thethaiger.com/news/national/wild-elephants-drag-elderly-man-from-pineapple-hut-and-trample-him-to-death

Friday, January 18, 2019

Indonesian road-building spree among ‘world’s scariest’ environmental threats


An ambitious road-building spree by the Indonesian government will fragment and destroy vast areas of tropical rainforests on the island of Borneo, according to an international research team.

“You’d be hard-pressed to identify a scarier threat to biodiversity anywhere on Earth,” said Dr Mohammed Alamgir from James Cook University in Australia, lead author of the study.

“Borneo’s forests and rare wildlife have already been hit hard, but planned roads and railways will shred much of what remains, slicing across the largest remaining forest blocks,” said Professor Jatna Supriatna of the University of Indonesia.

The authors say their results are especially worrisome because Indonesian Borneo is one of the world’s largest tracts of native tropical forest, currently spanning 37 million hectares (93 million acres).

The roads are part of an ambitious plan by the Indonesian government to expand infrastructure such as roads and railways in order to accelerate logging, mining, oil palm plantations and other forms of development in Borneo.

Read more: Drug arrests, Halifax and Cordelia
“For wide-ranging species such as an elephant or orangutan, this is the worst possible news,” said Professor William Laurance from James Cook University, leader of the research team. “To find food and shelter, these species have to move to survive.”

Professor Laurance and his colleagues used satellite images and computer models to estimate the impacts of the road and rail network across Indonesian Borneo, a region known as Kalimantan. Their research was published in the journal Scientific Reports.

They found the roads would reduce “forest connectivity”—the degree to which forest cover is spatially linked together — sharply, by 34 percent in total.

“That’s an alarming figure,” said Dr Alamgir. “And it’s just the tip of the iceberg, because the new roads and rail projects will open up the forest like a flayed fish, allowing illegal colonists, poachers and miners to invade the forest and cause even more forest disruption.”

The scientists said that in addition, the new projects will slice through 42 national parks and protected areas, making them far more vulnerable to illegal poachers. Some parks in Borneo are already devoid of wildlife because of severe poaching.

Read more: UnionPay's acceptance footprint extends to 174 countries and regions
“We’ve identified the worst projects in terms of disrupting forests,” said Professor Laurance. “They include border roads in the provinces of West, East and North Kalimantan, new Trans-Kalimantan roads, and freeways and rail lines in East Kalimantan.”

“These projects will be like daggers in the heart of the Borneo rainforest,” said Dr Alamgir. “We implore the Indonesian government to reconsider them, because they’ll open a Pandora’s box of crises for the world’s biologically richest forests.”

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.miragenews.com/indonesian-road-building-spree-among-world-s-scariest-environmental-threats/

Thursday, January 03, 2019

11 Sumatran elephants die in Indonesia's Aceh province throughout 2018


JAKARTA, Jan. 3 (Xinhua) -- Eleven Sumatran elephants have died from poaching activities, conflict with humans and natural causes throughout 2018, lower than the recorded 13 in the previous year, an Aceh provincial Natural Resources Conservancy Center (BKSDA) official said on Thursday.

Head of Aceh BKSDA Sapto Aji Prabowo said regency that recorded the most death of the protected animal last year was East Aceh with 4 cases. It was followed by Aceh Besar with 3 cases.

"From the 11 deaths, 3 were caused by elephant conflicts with humans, 3 by poaching activities and 5 by natural causes," Sapto said in Aceh capital of Banda Aceh.

Among the tragic elephant deaths were two in East Aceh and Bireuen regencies as they were found with their tusks already gone. One of them was allegedly being poisoned that led to its death.

Aceh saw diminishing number of Sumatran elephants live in the wild, mostly due to conflicts with humans and poaching activities.

Aceh BKSDA said that population of the protected animal in Aceh forest now is estimated at around 500.

Risk of decreasing elephant population was growing due to expansion of plantation areas, shrinking their habitat and prompting them to commit conflicts with humans. Enditem

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.china.org.cn/world/Off_the_Wire/2019-01/03/content_74338658.htm

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Wild elephant was found dead without its ivory in Aceh


ACEH, INDONESIA - DECEMBER 29: A wild elephant was found dead without its ivory in the Peusangan River area, Bireuen districts, Aceh Province, Indonesia, on December 29, 2018. According to the Aceh Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA Aceh) the elephant died more than 15 days before it was found, allegedly this wild elephant was killed by hunters and the ivory was taken.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.gettyimages.com/detail/video/wild-elephant-was-found-dead-without-its-ivory-in-the-news-footage/1087863122

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

The 'dark truth' behind elephant tourism includes separating baby elephants from their mothers to break their spirit. Here's how advocates are trying to stop it.


Rows of elephants chained up in cramped stables, saddles resting heavy on their backs. Mahouts — trainers — standing close by, clutching sharp bull hooks. Nearby, groups of tourists wait to mount the beasts ahead of an exhausting trek through jungle.

This is a common sight across Asia. It is also one that organisations promoting the ethical treatment of elephants are trying to stamp out through a series of initiatives.

One such initiative — the inaugural Elephant Travel Mart, organised by the Save Elephant Foundation and Asian Elephant Projects — took place this month in Chiang Mai, Thailand's elephant capital, and brought together operators of ethical elephant tours and tour agencies.

"Elephant tourism in Asia has traditionally relied on elephants being used for riding, street begging and performing demeaning tricks for tourists," says Ry Emmerson, projects director at the Save Elephant Foundation. "Visitors to Asia should understand that behind the scenes, the elephants are suffering at many camps and circuses."

When we speak, Emmerson has just returned from a five-day mission in remote northern Thailand, where he helped a wild baby elephant who had lost his herd and needed urgent medical care.

He explains that elephant tourism is widespread in the region, from elephant tours and zoos to circuses and street performances in which the animals perform tricks and paint pictures.

Often-unwitting tourists help perpetuate the industry, which campaigners say is still tainted by cruelty, despite efforts to bring about change.

"Tourists need to know that elephant riding and performing tricks comes at a high price for the elephants in terms of their suffering," Emmerson says.

Baby elephants are often separated from their mothers at a young age and subjected to a process referred to as "elephant crushing," or breaking the baby's spirit.

This involves a series of barbaric measures carried out across several weeks, including keeping them in small cages, tying their feet with ropes, and repeatedly beating them with bullhooks.

Once the elephant is broken, its dedicated mahout releases it and offers it food and water, becoming its "saviour." Violence and the threat of it continues to be used throughout the elephant's life.

Elephants are often mistreated, Emmerson says, with bull hooks and other sharp objects used to coerce the animals into performing. They are also commonly kept on short chains in the sun, with little food or water.

Constantly carrying the weight of tourists takes its toll on their spines over time, and not allowing these intelligent animals to socialise, play in water, roll in mud, and amble through the jungle also causes mental stress.

"Most elephants suffer from both physical and psychological injuries as a result of this daily trauma," Emmerson says. "Traditional forms of elephant tourism such as riding and shows continue to be funded by tourists who do not know the dark truth behind these practices.

"We believe education is the key to changing the future of elephant tourism across Asia."

Tourists are being encouraged to play their part in the overhaul. Emmerson recommends doing research before visiting an elephant attraction by reading newspaper articles and checking independent reviews and photographs posted online by visitors and elephant tourism operators.

It is also advisable to check with tour operators what sort of elephant activities are planned, whether bull hooks or other objects are used, and group sizes — intimate tours are better for the elephants.

Emmerson also urges visitors who witness cruel practices while on a tour to post online reviews and social media comments to help others avoid them.

"Travellers have the power to influence positive change for elephants in captivity by withdrawing their support from elephant tour operators offering elephant riding and shows," Emmerson says. "This sends a strong message that these traditional forms of elephant tourism are no longer considered acceptable.

"When demand for elephant riding and performances is diminished, the widespread transition to a more compassionate form of elephant tourism is inevitable."

Elephant Travel Mart, which took place at the Khum Kan Toke cultural venue in Chiang Mai, is the brainchild of Sangduen Chailert, founder of the Save Elephant Foundation. Its aim is to raise awareness of the plight of the Asian elephant while supporting ecotourism initiatives to protect the species.

Award-winning conservationist Chailert, also known as Lek, has dedicated her life to saving Thailand's elephants. Her tireless work was the focus of the critically acclaimed documentary Love & Bananas: An Elephant Story, which was released in April 2018.

An eco start-up in Laos that is doing elephant tourism right

"The success of this event holds the potential to positively impact the welfare of elephants in Thailand, protect and improve the environment, and provide support to local communities," Chailert says.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.businessinsider.com/elephant-tourism-the-fight-against-unethical-operators-steps-up-2018-12

Saturday, December 01, 2018

Injured Sumatran elephant rescued, fitted with tracker


An injured elephant was found in Panca village, Aceh Besar, Aceh, on Thursday, after she had been roaming around plantations in the area for days.

Residents reported sighting the female, which had injuries to her tail and the left side of her chest, to the Aceh Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA Aceh). The agency sent a team to start searching for the elephant on Wednesday night and she was located on Thursday.

The chairman of BKSDA Aceh, Sapto Adji Prabowo, and his team conducted surgery on the elephant on the same day. The team had to amputate the tail as the injury and resulting infection was too severe to save it.

“The surgery ran smoothly and the elephant has been given antibiotics and vitamins,” Sapto said in a written statement.

The BKSDA put a GPS tracker collar on the elephant so that the agency would be able to monitor her location after release. The tracker is also expected to provide information about other elephants in the area to discover the migration patterns of the group. The information could be used as an early warning system to anticipate and resolve conflicts between the animals and humans.

Sapto said the BKSDA has placed GPS trackers on six elephants in Aceh, four of which are still active and are contributing significant information to aid in animal conservation.

The government estimates only about 500 Sumatran elephants remain in Aceh. They are hunted by poachers for their tusks.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2018/12/01/injured-sumatran-elephant-rescued-fitted-with-tracker.html

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Mahouts Of Zoos Undergo Capacity-Building Training Workshop In City


Mysuru: A five-day National-level training workshop on ‘Capacity-Building of Mahouts’ organised by Mysuru Zoo in association with Central Zoo Authority (CZA), New Delhi for Mahouts and Kavadis of 10 Zoos across the country began at Mysuru Zoo yesterday.

The workshop will be held till Nov. 23. The training will be conducted for 59 Mahouts in two batches. 26 Mahouts from Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and other parts are being provided training in the first batch in elephant behavioural skills, food habits and ways of taking care of elephants. They will be taken to Dubare and other Forest camps as part of Capacity-Building. Experts from Chennai and other parts of the country will provide information about elephant care.

The second batch of training for Mahouts will be held from Feb. 4 to 8, 2019 at the Mysuru Zoo.

Speaking after inaugurating the workshop, Member Secretary of Karnataka State Pollution Control Board and IFS Officer Manoj Kumar extolled the skills of Mahouts who are involved in taking care of elephants at various forest camps, temples and Mutts.

He said that this workshop is organised with the main intention of enhancing their skills in elephant care and elephant management. He added that the Forest Department had organised several such training workshops to enhance the skills of Mahouts as Karnataka is harbouring highest number of wild elephants in the country. Some of the Mahouts were also sent to Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Assam, Uttar Pradesh and other States to hone their skills.

Pointing out that their services were in demand in various combing operations to track and capture rogue elephants, Manoj Kumar said that Mahouts and Kavadis had inherited these skills from their ancestors without going to any schools or educational institutions. Stressing the need for proper care and protection of Mahouts to promote the skills, the IFS Officer wanted Mahouts to develop a close bond with the elephants at various camps and Zoos across the country.

The Mahouts must take special care of elephants in this digital era as otherwise people will upload the pictures of elephants in case they are ill-treated, he said.

Interestingly, Manoj Kumar addressed the participants in six languages ­— Hindi, English, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam — as Mahouts had arrived from different parts of the country for the workshop.

Karnataka is home to 6,034 elephants, 450 tigers

Speaking on the occasion, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Elephant Project) Jagathram said that there are 6,034 elephants, 450 tigers, 250 leopards and other wild animals in Karnataka. He added that the Department is also taking care of these wild animals besides preventing man-animal conflicts, wild animals destroying properties and crops after straying into human habitats.

Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests and Member Secretary of Zoo Authority of Karnataka (ZAK) B.P. Ravi said that there are 140 elephants in forest camps, 42 at various temples and Mutts across the State and appreciated the skills of Mahouts who take care of elephants which weigh nearly 5,000 to 6,000 kgs.

He said there are nine Zoological Gardens in Karnataka and added that there were plans to set up Veterinary Hospitals to take care of wild animals at Hampi and Gadag this year.

Training programmes for veterinarians, assistant veterinarians and other staff who are taking care of elephants and other wild animals in Zoo and Forest camps were held at various places.

DCF Sidramappa Chalkapure, Mysuru Zoo Executive Director Ajit Kulkarni, Regional Director of Animal Husbandry, Chennai, Dr. N.S. Manoharan and others were present.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://starofmysore.com/mahouts-of-zoos-undergo-capacity-building-training-workshop-in-city/

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Flooding forces elephants to enter residential area in Indonesia


Floods have forced a herd of 11 wild elephants to flee their natural habitat and enter plantation areas located near a residential compound in Tapung district, Kampar regency, Riau province.

The elephants had reportedly eaten and destroyed a cassava plantation, young oil palms and other plants before they went into hiding in the bushes located some 3 to 4 kilometers from the residential area.The head of the Riau Natural Resource Conservation Agency (BBKSDA), Heru Sutmantoro, said the plantations were in what was originally the natural habitat of the wild elephants, which move from one place to another between Pekanbaru, Kampar and Siak.“Tapung is one of their crossing areas,” Heru said on Tuesday, adding that the elephants had avoided it because it was inundated with water.

He said the 11 members of the herd all belong to the same family. They consist of adult female elephants, juveniles and a calf.Responding to reports from residents, BBKSDA Riau promptly sent four personnel from the Minas elephant training center to prevent the herd from approaching the housing. He confirmed that the team had found traces of the elephants.“The team is still in the field and maintaining communications with the plantation owners. They also patrol the site at night,” Heru said.According to Heru, the team had drawn up a plan to drive the elephant herd to Minas in Siak regency or to Koto Garo in Kampar regency by using firecrackers and cannon.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.nationmultimedia.com/detail/asean-plus/30359020

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Flooding forces elephants to enter residential area in Riau


JAKARTA (THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Floods have forced a herd of 11 wild elephants to flee their natural habitat and enter plantation areas located near a residential compound in Tapung district, Kampar regency, Riau province.

The elephants had reportedly eaten and destroyed a cassava plantation, young oil palms and other plants before they went into hiding in the bushes located some 3 to 4km from the residential area.

The head of the Riau Natural Resource Conservation Agency (BBKSDA), Heru Sutmantoro, said the plantations were in what was originally the natural habitat of the wild elephants, which move from one place to another between Pekanbaru, Kampar and Siak.

"Tapung is one of their crossing areas," Heru said on Tuesday (Nov 20), adding that the elephants had avoided it because it was inundated with water.

He said the 11 members of the herd all belong to the same family. They consist of adult female elephants, juveniles and a calf.

Responding to reports from residents, BBKSDA Riau promptly sent four personnel from the Minas elephant training centre to prevent the herd from approaching the housing. He confirmed that the team had found traces of the elephants.

"The team is still in the field and maintaining communications with the plantation owners. They also patrol the site at night," Heru said.

According to Heru, the team had drawn up a plan to drive the elephant herd to Minas in Siak regency or to Koto Garo in Kampar regency by using firecrackers and cannon.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/flooding-forces-elephants-to-enter-residential-area-in-riau

Friday, November 16, 2018

Sumatran elephant found dead with missing tusks in Indonesia


A Sumatran elephant has been found dead with its tusks removed in an apparent poaching case targeting the critically endangered animal, an Indonesian conservation official said Friday (Nov 16).

To read the full article, click on the story title.

Monday, November 05, 2018

KIM KARDASHIAN DEFENDS DECISION TO RIDE ELEPHANT AFTER CRITICS ACCUSE HER OF ‘ANIMAL CRUELTY’


Kim Kardashian-West has responded to critics who accused her of “animal cruelty” after she was pictured riding an elephant in Sumatra, Indonesia.

The 38-year-old was visiting an elephant sanctuary with her two young children, North and Saint, and has insisted that she “did full research” before arriving.

But photographs of the reality TV star sat astride one of the animals prompted a diatribe on social media, with wildlife campaigners calling her actions “disgusting” and “irresponsible”.

“You should be ashamed of yourself riding those elephants,” wrote one person on Twitter.

“Those elephants should be free and shouldn’t have to drive you and your family around!”

Another added: “Why am I not surprised that in 2018 Kim Kardashian is riding elephants and further promoting animal exploitation tourism.

“Disgusting and irresponsibly cruel. If you knew what pain and torture they’ve been through.”

Downton Abbey actor Peter Egan, who played Hugh MacClare, tweeted the images and accused the mother-of-two of “ignorance and such a lack of care”.

He continued: “Doesn’t she understand the cruelty inflicted on these poor elephants in order for her inane photo shoot?”

Several hours later, the Keeping Up With The Kardashians star responded to Egan, writing: “We visited an elephant sanctuary that has rescued these elephants from Sumatra where they would have otherwise gone extinct.

“It is an organisation that is working to save these beautiful animals. We did full research before going.”

A representative from the animal rights organisation PETA has explained how riding elephants can have adverse effects.

“All over the world, tourist traps offer the chance to climb up on an elephant's back without divulging what these animals endure,” said Rachel Matthews, deputy director at PETA in the US.

“Baby elephants have their spirits broken through an egregiously cruel process in which still-nursing elephants are dragged from their mothers, immobilised, and gouged with bull hooks and nails.

“These horrific, ritualized training sessions often leave elephants severely injured and traumatized, and some do not survive. Riding elephants or visiting camps that force elephants to come into contact with humans directly supports these abuses.”

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/kim-kardashian-west-animal-cruelty-elephant-a8617021.html

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

COVERED IN WOUNDS Horror as cruel elephant keepers STAB helpless beasts through the trunk to control them in front of holiday makers


THESE shocking pictures show elephants allegedly being punctured with sharp objects by cruel handlers forcing them to perform.

The shocking abuse was allegedly uncovered at the Taman Safari in the city of Bogor, West Java, Indonesia.

On later inspection the skin of the elephant can be seen to be badly damaged

A scar can clearly be seen on this elephant

It would seem the animals must suffer in the name of entertainment

Wounds are clearly visible all over their bodies

None of the audience seems in the least bit concerned at what is going on

WAZA has confirmed they are investigating the allegations.

Dr Chris Draper, Head of Animal Welfare and Captivity at Born Free, said: "Born Free has been concerned about the activities at Taman Safari in Bogor, Indonesia, for some time, as a result of numerous complaints from tourists and members of the public visiting the zoo.

"The direct abuse of elephants reported is completely unacceptable and must be investigated by the relevant authorities.

"It is shocking that this zoo is listed as a member of WAZA, which claims to represent ‘leading’, ‘high standard’ zoos across the world, and apparently requires its members to 'ensure that they ‘ensure that all animals in their care are treated with the utmost care and their welfare should be paramount all times'.

"These assurances begin to sound meaningless in light of the reported abuse and exploitation of elephants in shows and rides at one of their members zoo."

One of the beleaguered elephants raises his trunk when he sees the photographer

On the Taman Safari Indonesia (TSI) website, the zoo claims to be a "pioneer leader in conservation and recreational parks".

A statement about the organisation reads: "With its long experience in this field, TSI has obtained both national and international accreditation as the best conservation institute in Indonesia for wildlife management and its supporting infrastructure."

It also states: "Today, Taman Safari Indonesia is determined in its commitment to continue its endeavour to become a conservation, education and recreation park proudly recognised the world over."

Families can be seen happily riding around on the allegedly injured beasts

Aaron, 38, added: "Every day the elephants perform in shows which involve elaborate reconstructions of human and elephant conflict caused by the palm oil industry.

"After a show when we were there, the elephants became boisterous. A handler was seen to punch one on its trunks and pull its tail in order to control it.

"On closer inspection, it appeared the handler was concealing a sharp object in his hand, which caused multiple puncture wounds on the elephant's trunk."

The safari park is now under investigation after the photographs came to light

After checking out the other elephants, Aaron said they also had similar wounds.

He said: "Security saw us documenting what was happening and asked us to put our cameras away.

"The images have not been seen by many people, but I think they will be shocked.

"Elephants are much loved, intelligent and sentient beings that should not be ridden, touched or used in shows.

"They’re not here for our entertainment. And they most definitely should not be controlled using such violent means.

"Elephants have some of the most finely tuned senses in the animal kingdom, so Taman Safari, Bogor, would be a very stressful environment for them with lots of people, small areas, loud music, flashing lights.

"It’s about as unsuitable a habit for elephants that one could imagine."

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/7566765/elephant-keepers-stab-trunk-indonesia-tourists/

Example Title

An excited crowd of tourists cheered on an elephant show in Taman Safari in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia, as the elephants were stabbed in their trunks by their handlers.

This shocking animal abuse was documented by Born Free, a wildlife charity and Aaron Gekoski, a photojournalist. He said the photos of the stab wounds on the elephants’ trunks were inflicted by the trainers as a means to control the animals.

Other abuse taking place by the animal trainers includes pulling the elephants’ tails and punching them in their trunks.

This zoo is a member of the World Associations of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) which mandates its members to treat all animals in their capticity with the utmost care.

Photo journalist Gekoski said: “Every day the elephants perform in shows which involve elaborate reconstructions of human and elephant conflict caused by the palm oil industry. After a show when we were there, the elephants became boisterous. A handler was seen to punch one on its trunks and pull its tail in order to control it.

“On closer inspection, it appeared the handler was concealing a sharp object in his hand, which caused multiple puncture wounds on the elephant’s trunk. After checking out the other elephants, they also had similar wounds. Security saw us documenting what was happening and asked us to put our cameras away.”




Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.eturbonews.com/235994/world-associations-of-zoos-and-aquariums-investigating-indonesia-zoo-for-abuse-claims

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Indonesia to Restore Elephant Habitats Amid Declining Population of the Species


Jakarta, GIVnews.com – The Indonesian government is planning to restore elephant habitats in Sumatra and Kalimantan, homes of the endangered species. This move is meant as a respond to the reportedly declining number of elephants on the two big islands.

Currently, elephants in Indonesia are mostly found in Sumatra. It has been reported by Kompas that 1,700 elephants currently live in several areas in Sumatra, including in the northern part of Aceh and Lampung in southern Sumatra. The number is below the 2,700 elephants population that was recorded a decade ago.

Quoting a survey by the Indonesian Elephant Population Forum (FKGI), the Kompas article also mentioned about serious elephants’ extinction across 13 habitat locations in Sumatra. This situation was due to the massive opening of new plantations and the creation of more monoculture forest areas on the island. Illegal poaching had also worsen the situation, according to FKGI.

Many of these elephants reside in national parks. The Seblat Natural Park in Bengkulu currently has about 70 elephants. And the elephant population in the 6,000-hectare park may decline due to the planned opening of new coal mines in the area. The Mount Leuser National Park in Aceh is currently home to about 400 elephants. But, a steam power plant project in the area could seriously threaten the existence of those species. Meanwhile, in the Bukit Tigapuluh Ekosistim Park in Jambi, oil palm, rubber, acacia and eucalyptus plantation projects are dispersing elephant flocks.

Conservationists had in the past years aired their worries about a decreasing number of elephants in Indonesia as no serious efforts had been made to prevent the decline from happening. Reportedly, the number of elephants in Sumatra and Kalimantan had continued to shrink over the past 25 years due to various reasons. They included poisoning, natural death and decreasing conserved forest areas because of the opening of new oil palm estates. But, not much is known about elephants in Kalimantan.

Beside Indonesia, 11 other Asian countries also have elephant population. They include Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. Elephant population is also found in Sub-Saharan Africa.

You may also be interested in this article: A Dangerous Place for Elephants

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.globalindonesianvoices.com/33453/indonesia-to-restore-elephant-habitats-amid-declining-population-of-the-species/

Indonesia to Restore Elephant Habitats Amid Declining Population of the Species


Jakarta, GIVnews.com – The Indonesian government is planning to restore elephant habitats in Sumatra and Kalimantan, homes of the endangered species. This move is meant as a respond to the reportedly declining number of elephants on the two big islands.

Currently, elephants in Indonesia are mostly found in Sumatra. It has been reported by Kompas that 1,700 elephants currently live in several areas in Sumatra, including in the northern part of Aceh and Lampung in southern Sumatra. The number is below the 2,700 elephants population that was recorded a decade ago.

Quoting a survey by the Indonesian Elephant Population Forum (FKGI), the Kompas article also mentioned about serious elephants’ extinction across 13 habitat locations in Sumatra. This situation was due to the massive opening of new plantations and the creation of more monoculture forest areas on the island. Illegal poaching had also worsen the situation, according to FKGI.

Many of these elephants reside in national parks. The Seblat Natural Park in Bengkulu currently has about 70 elephants. And the elephant population in the 6,000-hectare park may decline due to the planned opening of new coal mines in the area. The Mount Leuser National Park in Aceh is currently home to about 400 elephants. But, a steam power plant project in the area could seriously threaten the existence of those species. Meanwhile, in the Bukit Tigapuluh Ekosistim Park in Jambi, oil palm, rubber, acacia and eucalyptus plantation projects are dispersing elephant flocks.

Conservationists had in the past years aired their worries about a decreasing number of elephants in Indonesia as no serious efforts had been made to prevent the decline from happening. Reportedly, the number of elephants in Sumatra and Kalimantan had continued to shrink over the past 25 years due to various reasons. They included poisoning, natural death and decreasing conserved forest areas because of the opening of new oil palm estates. But, not much is known about elephants in Kalimantan.

Beside Indonesia, 11 other Asian countries also have elephant population. They include Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. Elephant population is also found in Sub-Saharan Africa.

You may also be interested in this article: A Dangerous Place for Elephants

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.globalindonesianvoices.com/33453/indonesia-to-restore-elephant-habitats-amid-declining-population-of-the-species/

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Elephants take the flag in Indonesia independence ceremony


A trio of rare elephants led an unusual ceremony in the Sumatran jungle Friday, raising Indonesia’s red and white flag to help mark the country’s independence day. Brandishing a flagpole flying the national colours by the trunk, lead elephant Ulu marched outside a conservation office in northern Aceh province as onlookers sung the national anthem. “As we can see here, this is also an education for us, that elephants can live side by side with humans,” Rizal, an elephant trainer at the conservation office, told AFP.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.rocketnews.com/2018/08/elephants-take-the-flag-in-indonesia-independence-ceremony/

Four-tusked ‘elephant’ on display at Bandung museum – in fossils


Skull fossils of an animal related to today’s elephant species that had four ivory tusks instead of two are currently exhibited at the Geology Museum in Bandung, West Java.

The items were discovered in the 1990s by the museum's research team in Wallanae Valley, South Sulawesi.

Visitors to the museum can also marvel at other interesting fossils at the exhibition, including of an ancient pig (Celebochoerus heekereni) and a giant turtle (Geochelone atlas).

As reported by tempo.co, the elephant-relates species that used to live in Sulawesi according to the fossils found include the Stegodon sompoensis, Stegodon sp. and Elephas celebensis, which refers to the four-tusked animal.

"The age of the ancient elephant's fossils is around 2 million years," said the head of the research team, Fachroel Aziz, a paleovertebrata expert, as quoted by tempo.co.

The fossils of the Stegodon in Sulawesi were first discovered by Dutch researcher Dirk Albert Hooijer in 1953. After his next findings in Sompoh area, he later proposed Stegodon sompoensis as a new species name.

A joint team of the Bandung Geology Research and Development Center and the University of Utrecht as well as the Netherlands' National Museum of Natural History did research in Wallanae Valley between 1989 and 1992. Among their findings were teeth and skull fossils.

Based on the size of their teeth, said Fachroel, the Stegodon sompoensis was considered a dwarf. "It was a small elephant, similar to a buffalo [in size]."

Meanwhile the Elephas celebensis that had four tusks was first found by Dutch researcher Heekeren in 1947. The two upper tusks are believed to have been used as a weapon and gouge. Meanwhile, the use of the pair of smaller, lower tusks is not yet known.

According to researcher Gert van den Berg, so far evidence of their existence in Indonesia has only been found in Sulawesi. During the Miosen era that ran from 23 to 5 million years ago, many of this species could be found in Asia.

"The Stegoloxodon was a relict in Sulawesi; since it was isolated, it was able to exist," he said, adding that elephants in Asia were extinct due to competition with later elephant species. (kes)

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.thejakartapost.com/life/2018/08/24/four-tusked-elephant-on-display-at-bandung-museum-in-fossils.html

Lethal virus detected in wild elephants


New Delhi: Scientists have detected multiple cases of a lethal haemorrhagic viral infection for the first time in wild elephant calves in India and raised concerns that it could threaten the long-term survival of some Asian elephant populations.

Wildlife officials in India have identified 13 lethal cases of elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus (EEHV) between 2013 and 2017, eight among them in elephant calves living among free-ranging wild herds, three in camp-raised orphans and two in captive-born calves.

Since the early-1990s, scientists have documented the deaths of more than 100 captive elephant calves from EEHV, a mammalian herpes virus that can cause acute haemorrhagic disease and that had been identified in 1990 in an elephant calf in a circus in Switzerland.

The International Elephant Foundation estimates EEHV has been responsible for the deaths of 20 per cent of all Asian elephant calves born in zoos and elephant housing facilities over the past 25 years.

The virus has since then also turned up in captive elephant calves in Borneo, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Singapore and Thailand, prompting some scientists to suggest that EEHV affects only captive elephants and that it had crossed into Asian elephants from African elephants.

"What is unusual is that we're seeing this infection among elephant calves in the wild," said Arun Zachariah, a wildlife veterinarian with Kerala's forest and wildlife department at Sultan Bathery in Wayanad. Almost all previous cases in Asia were in captive-born calves or rescued camp orphans.

Zachariah had first documented EEHV infections in nine elephant calves between 2005 and 2011, including four wild free-ranging calves, three rescued orphans and two captive-born calves.

All the infections were reported from Kerala and one from Maharashtra. Zachariah said he had also confirmed one case of EEHV in a sample sent from Assam but did not hear from the forest officials again.

In their new study, Zachariah and his collaborators with SciGenom Research Foundation in Kerala and the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in the US have analysed segments of the EEHV genomes from the earlier set of nine calves and the 13 new infections up to 2017.

The study's findings, published on Thursday in the journal PLOS One, appear to corroborate earlier suggestions that despite the severity of the infection Asian elephants appear to be an ancient host for the EEHV virus.

"It is possible that Asian elephants and EEHV co-evolved over millions of years," Zachariah told The Telegraph. "We still need to understand why more cases appear to be emerging and why adult elephants appear protected."

The scientists say the widespread presence of the disease "raise serious concerns" about its impact on the long-term survival of the highly endangered Asian elephant populations and its challenge on efforts to breed elephants in captivity.

"Fragmented elephant populations may be at risk," Zachariah said. With growing pressures on wildlife habitats, conservation scientists have long been worried about habitat fragmentation leadingo the isolation of small elephant herds.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.telegraphindia.com/india/lethal-virus-detected-in-wild-elephants/cid/1532436

Land owners have to explain elephant deaths


KOTA KINABALU: The State Government has invoked Section 33 of the State Wildlife Enactment which requires land owners to explain to the State wildlife director when an elephant is found dead on their property.

Deputy Chief Minister Christina Liew said a RM120,000 government reward for whistleblowers or eyewitnesses had not been able to stop the death and killing of elephants.

Due to the killing of a Borneo Pygmy Elephant mother which died of a head shot, and its baby, body missing and only innards were left at the scene, Liew added the ministry had no choice but to invoke the enactment.

“We will ask them to come and explain to the director, why is the elephant killed on your land? We want him to explain and this we have to turn to this last resort already. The senseless killings have been going on quite rampantly and we feel very sorry these elephants were killed unnecessarily.

“We do not know what is the motive but whatever it is, it has to be stopped. That is why we are invoking the act and this will take immediate effect from today,” she added after launching her ministry’s 50th anniversary celebration here.

Liew assured the state government would not go soft on owners of lands, whether located in the forest reserve or Yayasan Sabah concession areas, amongst others.

“Everybody. (It) applies across the board. Some people think that because the elephant was killed in the forest reserve or in the government’s land then we will be lenient. No, no more.

“We have been advising them. This human-elephant conflict has been going on long enough. We’ve done everything that we could. I found it getting bad now,” she explained, reiterating that the law would be enforced on all types of land owners, including smallholders and plantation owners.

Liew added in the future, a Special Animal Unit that would be handled by an American elephant expert.

On Wednesday, Sabah Wildlife director Augustine Tuuga revealed that 25 Borneo pygmy elephants were found dead this year, either shot or snared in traps in jungles and plantations in the state.

“This is the highest recorded so far,” Augustine said, referring to annual fatalities. Over 100 elephants have died in the last eight years in Sabah.

Conservation group WWF estimates that only around 1,500 elephants are left.

Baby-faced with oversized ears and long tails that drag on the ground, pygmy elephants are found on Borneo island which is shared by Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei.

Loss of habitat is the biggest threat for the pygmy elephants, with deforestation, logging and rapid expansion of palm oil plantations contributing to the decline in their population. The elephants also fall prey to poachers or traps set up to catch animals.

Authorities have been unable to determine the exact reasons for the higher number of deaths this year, but Augustine said they have noticed elephants spending more time outside of forests and in plantations.

The rich rainforests of Borneo are surrounded by vast palm oil plantations. Palm oil companies in Malaysia and Indonesia, the world’s top two producers of the vegetable oil, have been accused of doing little to protect wildlife and their habitat.

The latest reported death in Sabah was on Saturday, when wildlife officers found the slightly decomposed carcass of a female elephant in a plantation, with what they believe was a gunshot wound at its temple.

There have been at least two other deaths by shooting and many others caused by injuries from traps.

Bringing the killers to justice has proven to be difficult, due to the remoteness of the locations and the sheer lack of information and witnesses, Augustine said.

No witnesses have come forward despite a reward offer of RM120,000, he said.
WWF Malaysia called on palm oil companies to take more action.

Four male elephants died from snare injuries in the past two months and all of them were found in plantations bordering forest reserves, WWF said in a statement this week.

“Even more worrisome than the number of elephant deaths are the number of elephants that have died due to strategically placed snare traps within their habitat,” the conservation group said.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.theborneopost.com/2018/08/31/land-owners-have-to-explain-elephant-deaths/

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Sumatran elephant 'poisoned' in Indonesia palm plantation

BANDA ACEH: A critically endangered elephant has been found dead in a palm oil plantation on Indonesia's Sumatra island in what is suspected to be a deliberate poisoning, an official said Friday (Jul 13).

The 10-year-old female Sumatran elephant was found in Jambo Reuhat village in North Aceh on Thursday - the third of its species to be found dead of suspected poisoning in the same palm plantation since 2015.

"We found fruits and a pouch with traces of powder inside the animal," Aceh conservation centre head Sapto Aji Prabowo told AFP.

"We suspect the death was caused by deliberate poisoning because her liver and spleen turned dark, a classic sign of poison," he added.

A group of veterinarians was deployed to the location after authorities were tipped off by locals.

Officials estimated the animal had been dead for three days when the carcass was discovered.

Sumatran elephants are a critically endangered species. Rampant deforestation to create plantations has reduced their natural habitat and brought them into conflict with humans.

At least 11 wild elephants died in Aceh last year, most of them killed by humans.

Earlier in June a tame Sumatran elephant was found dead from apparent poisoning in East Aceh district with its tusks missing.

Officials found the remains of fruits laced with poison inside the animal during the autopsy.

The environment ministry estimates only around 500 Sumatran elephant remain in Aceh.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/sumatran-elephant--poisoned--in-indonesia-palm-plantation-10529068





Friday, July 20, 2018

Killing of Aceh elephant is an organized crime: Environment Ministry



Idi, Aceh (ANTARA News)- The Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry views the killing of a domesticated elephant in the Serbajadi Conservation Response Unit (CRU) in East Aceh District, Aceh Province, as an organized crime.

"The ministry and the Police`s Criminal Investigation Department are committed to investigating the death of the domesticated elephant," veterinarian Indra Exploitasia, director of biodiversity conservation of the ministry, noted at a press conference here, recently.

The criminal case must be investigated thoroughly, and the perpetrators, including the executors and mastermind, must be arrested, he emphasized.

"Elephants are protected under Law No. 5 of 1990 on KSDAE (Conservation of Ecosystem Natural Resources)," he remarked.

Moreover, the species has been included on the appendix 1 of the CITES list, due to which its trade is banned, as they are on the brink of extinction due to human encroachment.

Based on the 2016 census conducted by the Elephant Forum, the population of elephants in Indonesia reaches 1,724 heads.

Elephant poaching is an organized and transnational crime, according to Exploitasia.

The ministry will continue its fight against animal poaching and trafficking of flora and fauna, including ivory, which is in high demand.


To read the full article, click on the story title.

Sumatran elephant 'poisoned' in Indonesia palm plantation



INDONESIA:
A critically endangered elephant has been found dead in a palm oil plantation on Indonesia’s Sumatra island in what is suspected to be a deliberate poisoning, an official said on Friday.

The 10-year-old female Sumatran elephant was found in Jambo Reuhat village in North Aceh on Thursday the third of its species to be found dead of suspected poisoning in the same palm plantation since 2015.

“We found fruits and a pouch with traces of powder inside the animal,” Aceh conservation centre head Sapto Aji Prabowo said.

“We suspect the death was caused by deliberate poisoning because her liver and spleen turned dark, a classic sign of poison,” he added.


Killing of endangered Sumatran elephant sparks anger

A group of veterinarians was deployed to the location after authorities were tipped off by locals.

Officials estimated the animal had been dead for three days when the carcass was discovered.

Sumatran elephants are a critically endangered species. Rampant deforestation to create plantations has reduced their natural habitat and brought them into conflict with humans.

At least 11 wild elephants died in Aceh last year, most of them killed by humans.

Earlier in June a tame Sumatran elephant was found dead from apparent poisoning in East Aceh district with its tusks missing.


Officials found the remains of fruits laced with poison inside the animal during the autopsy.

The environment ministry estimates only around 500 Sumatran elephant remain in Aceh.


Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://tribune.com.pk/story/1757292/3-sumatran-elephant-poisoned-indonesia-palm-plantation/



Sumatran elephant 'poisoned' in Indonesia palm plantation



BANDA ACEH: A critically endangered elephant has been found dead in a palm oil plantation on Indonesia's Sumatra island in what is suspected to be a deliberate poisoning, an official said Friday (Jul 13).

The 10-year-old female Sumatran elephant was found in Jambo Reuhat village in North Aceh on Thursday - the third of its species to be found dead of suspected poisoning in the same palm plantation since 2015.


"We found fruits and a pouch with traces of powder inside the animal," Aceh conservation centre head Sapto Aji Prabowo told AFP.

"We suspect the death was caused by deliberate poisoning because her liver and spleen turned dark, a classic sign of poison," he added.

A group of veterinarians was deployed to the location after authorities were tipped off by locals.

Officials estimated the animal had been dead for three days when the carcass was discovered.


Sumatran elephants are a critically endangered species. Rampant deforestation to create plantations has reduced their natural habitat and brought them into conflict with humans.

At least 11 wild elephants died in Aceh last year, most of them killed by humans.

Earlier in June a tame Sumatran elephant was found dead from apparent poisoning in East Aceh district with its tusks missing.

Officials found the remains of fruits laced with poison inside the animal during the autopsy.

The environment ministry estimates only around 500 Sumatran elephant remain in Aceh.


Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/sumatran-elephant--poisoned--in-indonesia-palm-plantation-10529068

Friday, July 06, 2018

Indonesian police nab poachers of endangered elephant




JAKARTA, July 4 (Xinhua) -- Police in Indonesia's Aceh province have arrested two people allegedly killing of a protected Sumatra elephant and hacking off its tusks, a police officer said on Wednesday.
Police chief in Aceh Timur district Wahyu Kuncoro said the two perpetrators killed the endangered animal in the compound of Conservation Response Unit in Bunin village.
The killing of the elephant also involved two other poachers, whom the police were hunting for, Wahyu said in the district.
"Evidences in the forms of a big knife and a T-shirt were seized and claimed by the two as things owned by their friends. Now, we are pursuing their friends who have been on the run," he was quoted by Kompas media as saying.
According to the provincial conservation agency, the perpetrators likely fed the elephant with poisoned foods, a common modus operandi used by poachers in the area.
The Sumatran elephant, known as Elephas maximus sumatranus, is one of three recognized subspecies of the Asian elephants, and has habitats on Indonesia's Sumatra Island.
The elephant was declared critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (UNCN) in 2011, as its population has declined by 80 percent over the past decades.
The wild population of Sumatran elephants is now estimated at between 2,400 to 2,800.


Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://archive.is/YzhUn#selection-325.0-353.85



Indonesian Environment Minister Investigates The Killing of Bunta The Elephant



JAKARTA, NNC – The Minister of Environment and Forestry, Siti Nurbaya will conduct an evaluation of the “Conservation Response Unit-CRU” management after a tame elephant named Bunta was found dead in Jamur Batang Village, Bunin Village, Serbajadi Sub-district, East Aceh.

“We will evaluate (CRU). We will call them later along with the Director General,” she said, Wednesday (6/13/2018).

Sity Nurbaya admitted she is concerned about the killing of an elephant located just 400 meters away from the location of Serbuadi CRU. Supposedly the killing occured because of limited number of personnel.

The case of Bunta’s killing has been handled by local police, also assisted by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and Natural Resources Conservation Center of Aceh.

Currently, the intestinal, spleen, cardiac and renal organ samplings have been performed for laboratory testing. Other samples taken were what was left of the left tusk and Bunta’s intact right tusk, measuring at 148 centimeters.

According to Natural Resources Conservation Center of Aceh, the temporary result shows that Bunta was poisoned. This is based on the damage and changes shown in the intestinal organs. Bunta’s bowel organs had internal bleeding, while the heart, liver and lungs were swollen.


To read the full article, click on the story title.

Elephant killed for ivory in East Aceh



A male elephant was found dead from poisoning in East Aceh, Aceh, on Sunday. One of its tusks had been removed. Bunta, 27, was part of the Conservation Response Unit (CRU) elephant team, which wards off wild elephants trying to enter the area. Bunta and three other elephants had been stationed at CRU Serbajadi in Bunin village, Serbajadi district, East Aceh, Aceh, since January 2016. The team was tasked with preventing animal-human conflicts in the area. Bunta was the main police elephant at CRU Serbajadi, which was visited by Hollywood actor Leonardo Di Caprio in March 2016. Based on information provided by the CRU Serbajadi team on Sunday, Bunta was found dead when a mahout went to relocate him from a forest located 500 meters from the CRU base camp to another area at 8 a.m. local time. He saw Bunta lying on the ground dead with one of his tusks missing. The mahout reported the incident to the Serbajadi Police, who forwarded the report to the East Aceh Police. East Aceh Police chief Adj.Sr.Comr.Wahyu Kuncoro said it appeared that the elephant had eaten poison-laced bananas and mangoes. “We are waiting for the […] the Aceh Natural Resources Conservation Agency’s veterinarian team to reveal cause of death.” (ebf)


 Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
https://www.aseanbreakingnews.com/2018/06/elephant-killed-for-ivory-in-east-aceh/

Poachers blamed in second Sumatran elephant death this year





AUTHORITIES in Indonesia have blamed poachers for the death of an elephant found with one of its tusks hacked off, in one of the world’s most biodiverse and threatened habitats.

The 27-year-old male Sumatran elephant, named Bunta, had since 2016 been regularly trained and employed by forest rangers in Aceh province as part of a unit to ward off wild elephants encroaching on farms and villages.

His body was found June 9 by forest rangers inside the Leuser Ecosystem, one of Indonesia’s last large tracts of intact rainforest, which is home to four of the most iconic and critically endangered species on Earth: the Sumatran elephant, tiger, rhino and orangutan.

Citing damage to the elephant’s digestive tract, and traces from fruit found near the carcass, officials from the Aceh conservation agency, or BKSDA, say it was likely that Bunta was poisoned — a common tactic used by poachers and farmers in the region.

“After the elephant died, one of its tusks was taken by slicing open its cheek,” Wahyu Kuncoro, of the East Aceh district police, told reporters a day after the body was found.

Sapto Aji Prabowo, the head of the Aceh BKSDA, lamented the elephant’s death and called on law enforcement to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“There’s a human who heartlessly killed this tame animal, this can’t be accepted by reason,” he said.

“We are absolutely at a loss at the passing of this male elephant,” he added. “Bunta was one of the elephants that we really relied on [for forest patrols].”

Under Indonesian conservation law, the killing, trading or distribution of protected species and their parts can incur jail sentences of up to five years and fines of up to 100 million rupiah ($7,160). But law enforcement on wildlife killings remains weak, with offenders rarely prosecuted. On the few occasions that cases make their way to court, the perpetrators typically receive token sentences or fines far below the maximum.


To read the full article, click on the story title.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The plight of the palm oil elephants



There are precious few elephants left in Borneo, and the population gets smaller every year.

Forests where they live are being slashed to make way for palm oil plantations, making it more and more difficult for elephants and farmers to thrive together in close quarters.

Photojournalist Aaron 'Bertie' Gekoski has been documenting the situation in southeast Asia.
A species in decline

It is thought that Borneo's elephants are a subspecies of the endangered Asian elephant (Elephus maximus), although scientists have yet to classify them as such.

According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Asian elephant populations have dwindled by 50% over the last three generations, as their habitats are shrinking and fragmenting.

Adult elephants can spend up to 19 hours a day feeding, and they roam for hundreds of kilometres through grassland, forests and scrubland. Their size means they need large areas of land to live comfortably - but their forest homes are being encroached upon by human homes, plantations and farms.

This pressure to find space has led to more and more conflicts between humans and elephants when elephants eat or trample crops. It's a particularly large problem in Indonesia and Malaysia, where huge areas of forests have been lost to palm oil plantations.

The plight of the elephants is perfectly captured in the image above, Palm-oil survivors, by environmental photojournalist Aaron Gekoski. It is in the current Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition.

Taken on a cleared palm oil plantation in Borneo, in the Malaysian state of Sabah, three generations of elephants are dwarfed by a scene of devastation around them.

With the light fading fast he quickly shot the four majestic mammals, reflecting on how they are 'dwarfed by a desolate and desecrated landscape'.




To read the full article, click on the story title.


Saturday, May 05, 2018

Critically endangered Javan Rhino dies in Indonesia





A Javan rhino has died in Indonesia, the environment ministry said today, bringing the critically endangered mammals closer to extinction with just 60 believed to be still living in the wild.

The body of the male rhino was found inside West Java's Ujung Kulon national park, the creature's last remaining habitat.


Its death was believed to be from old age rather than poaching.

The animal has been driven to the brink of extinction as their horns are highly valued in traditional Chinese and Korean medicine, although most countries in the region have banned the trade.

"We found it on (Monday) and are now performing an autopsy," said environment ministry spokesman Djati Witjaksono Hadi.

The 40-year-old rhino didn't had any offspring, he added.

Javan and Sumatran rhinos are classified as "critically endangered" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

The Javan rhino is distinguished from African rhinos by its smaller size, single horn and loose skin folds which give it the appearance of wearing armour plating.

 Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/critically-endangered-javan-rhino-dies-in-indonesia-118042600733_1.html


Monday, April 23, 2018

Chicco Jerikho on mission to save Sumatran elephant



Actor Chicco Jerikho is set to conduct a fundraising campaign for the preservation of the Sumatran elephant during his first-ever participation in the London Marathon on April 22.

According to tempo.co, Chicco is inviting the public to donate Rp 100,000 through the Elephantastic Run campaign website until April 23, with all proceeds to go to the conservation program. Registered participants can either run or walk a minimum distance of 5 kilometers anytime, anywhere from April 21 to 23.

Cities included in the Elephantastic Run, which is where the public can join the campaign, are Pekanbaru in Riau on April 15, and Jakarta, Banda Aceh in Aceh and Surabaya in East Java on April 22. The Sumatran elephant population in Riau has sharply declined from 1,300 in 1984 to only 300 to 330 in 2009, according to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia and the Riau Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA).

To read the full article, click on the story title

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Smoking orangutan stirs anger against zoo in Indonesia

JAKARTA, Indonesia — A video of an orangutan smoking has brought more criticism of a zoo in Indonesia infamous for past animal welfare troubles.

In the video shot Sunday, a young man flicks his half-smoked cigarette into the primate's enclosure. It's picked up by the reddish-brown primate, who expertly puffs on it to laughter from the crowd. 

Activist Marison Guciano said Wednesday the smoking ape is further evidence of a lack of supervision and education at Bandung Zoo, about 75 miles southwest of the capital, Jakarta.

Guciano said the man committed a crime but the privately owned zoo is mainly responsible because of its "ignorance of supervision and education for visitors."

The zoo has repeatedly made headlines for starving and sick animals. It was temporarily closed in 2016 after a Sumatran elephant that died was found to have bruises on its body.

A change.org petition calling for Bandung Zoo to be closed has nearly 1 million signatures. Visitors who review the zoo on TripAdvisor describe a dirty facility and sadness and anger at seeing the condition of the animals.

Zoo spokesman Sulhan Syafi'I said "we very much regret that such a thing happened" and the incident was reported to police.

Signs at the zoo warn visitors to not feed animals or give them cigarettes, he said.

Substandard conditions are common at Indonesian zoos and Guciano blamed the government for being slow in establishing animal welfare standards. 

 Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://triblive.com/usworld/world/13394741-74/smoking-orangutan-stirs-anger-against-zoo-in-indonesia

Friday, March 16, 2018

Indonesia Sumatran elephant found dead from suspected gunshots

Jakarta An elephant from the critically endangered Sumatran species has been found dead inside an Indonesian national park with what appear to be bullet wounds, the environment ministry said Wednesday. The female elephant was discovered in Sumatra's Way Kambas National Park on Monday. (AFP)

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:
http://www.qatar-tribune.com/news-details/id/111933

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Critically Endangered Sumatran Elephant Gives Birth In Indonesia

SUMATRA: A critically endangered Sumatran elephant has given birth to a new calf in Indonesia, the country’s conservation agency said yesterday.

Sumatran elephants are a protected species, but rampant deforestation for plantations has reduced their natural habitat and brought them into conflict with humans.

The newborn was found with its 40-year old mother Seruni, who was being closely monitored by the agency in anticipation of the birth inside a conservation forest in Riau on the island of Sumatra.–Agencies

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:https://nationalcourier.pk/cosmopolitan/critically-endangered-sumatran-elephant-gives-birth-indonesia/

Poachers blamed as body of Sumatran elephant, missing tusks, found in protected forest

Farmers in southern Sumatra found the body of a young male elephant inside a protected forest and missing its tusks.

No external injuries were found that could point to a cause of death, leading wildlife activists to suspect it was killed by poisoning, a common tactic used by poachers.

The discovery comes less than a month after a pregnant elephant was found poisoned to death in northern Sumatra — although in that case the tuskless female appeared more likely to have been killed for encroaching on farms than by poachers.

PALEMBANG, Indonesia — Wildlife activists in Indonesia suspect poachers poisoned an elephant found with its tusks hacked off in a protected forest in southern Sumatra.

The body of the male Sumatran elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus), believed to be about 10 years old, was found Sunday by local farmers in a community plantation within the Mount Raya protected forest area, which borders Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in South Sumatra province. The park is also home to critically endangered Sumatran tigers (Panthera tigris sondaica), rhinos (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) and orangutans (Pongo abelii), all of which faced increased threats from greater human incursion into their habitats as a result of road projects.

Citing a lack of wounds on the body, wildlife activists believe the elephant was killed by poisoning — a common tactic used by poachers in the region.

Muhroni, a wildlife expert with the environmental NGO Jejak Indonesia, who inspected the body, said the perpetrators likely sprayed the poison on grass, small plants and bushes outside the community plantation. If that’s the case, other elephants from the herd that the young male belonged to could also be in danger, he warned.

Authorities are conducting tests to determine the cause of death.

The discovery on Sunday came less than a month after a pregnant elephant was found dead in an oil palm plantation in Sumatra’s northernmost province of Aceh on Dec. 22.

In that case, authorities said an autopsy showed general signs of poisoning, including the digestive organs having turned black. The elephant was an estimated 25 years old and believed to be at least six months short of giving birth. It did not have tusks, as is typical for female Sumatran elephants.

High rates of deforestation throughout much of Sumatra, primarily for monoculture plantations such as oil palms, rubber and pulpwood, have driven native wildlife from their habitats and into more frequent conflicts with humans. Orangutans and elephants, in particular, are seen as pests by farmers for raiding crops and trampling plants. Locals have in many cases resorted to poisoning or shooting the animals.

Poisoning is also used by poachers targeting the elephants’ tusks. The average wholesale price for ivory in China, one of the key markets for the commodity, was $730 per kilogram (2.2 pounds) in February 2017, according to the Save the Elephants.

There are only an estimated 2,400 Sumatran elephants left in the wild, scattered across 25 fragmented habitats on the island.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:https://news.mongabay.com/2018/01/poachers-blamed-as-body-of-sumatran-elephant-missing-tusks-found-in-protected-forest/

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Pregnant Elephant Found Poisoned At Oil Plantation In Indonesia

At the end of December 2017, a 25 year old pregnant elephant and her unborn baby were found dead on a palm oil plantation in Sumatra. Authorities suspect that the animal had been poisoned by farmers, who blamed the elephant for eating their fertilizer.

She was the 11th elephant to die in the region that year. Saputo Aji Prabowo, head of the Aceh Conservation Center, said:From the autopsy, we saw that its digestive organs turned black which the doctor said was a general indication of poisoning.

Palm Oil: wildlife’s curse

Palm oil production, for many reasons, often has a devastating effect on animals and plants. Over-deforestation has become a problem in the area due to the number of oil plantations, which are growing in number because it is so profitable.

By losing their natural habitat, orangutan and elephant populations have no choice but to move closer to humans to find food, which often results in conflict when they run into humans. Orangutans and elephants in Sumatra are considered critically endangered and if nothing is done, these species will join the list of the many animals that are already extinct.

Scott Blais, the director of the charity Global Sanctuary for Elephants, told website The Dodo:

We must start to see and to recognize each individual as a life with purpose, as someone who is integral to their society and a being who has the right to live within a world that is theirs.

Head of communications for International Animal Resuce, Lis Key said:

It is vital and urgent that solutions are found if we are to stop critically endangered species like the elephant and the orangutan from vanishing forever.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link: http://www.holidogtimes.com/pregnant-elephant-found-poisoned-at-oil-plantation-in-indonesia/#BiKWvw4LDGhQAH4w.99


Monday, January 08, 2018

Tesso Nilo National Park welcomes newborn elephant

The elephant population at the Tesso Nilo National Park in Pelalawan regency, Riau, has grown as a Sumatran elephant gave birth on Tuesday.

The healthy male elephant was named Harmoni Rimbo and quickly became the center of attention at the Tesso Nilo Festival held in the park from Wednesday to Friday.

“The birth of the baby elephant should encourage all concerned parties that there is still hope [for elephants to live] in the Tesso Nilo National Park,” Wiratno, the Environment and Forestry Ministry’s director general for natural resources and the ecosystem, told Antara on Thursday.

Harmoni Rimbo, or simply Har, was born after cross-mating a male wild elephant and a captive female elephant named Ria, which belongs to the Tesso Nilo Elephant Flying Squad, a joint operation of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia and the Conservation Authority of Riau.

Har is the sixth elephant to be born since the Elephant Flying Squad was formed in 2004.

Ria was detected to be pregnant in May last year. She has already given birth to two elephants, one in 2011 and the second in 2014.

Tesso Nilo Natinal Park chairman Supartono said with the birth of Harmoni Rimbo the park now has eight domesticated elephants.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2017/11/23/tesso-nilo-national-park-welcomes-newborn-elephant.html

Friday, December 22, 2017

Tesso Nilo National Park welcomes newborn elephant

The elephant population at the Tesso Nilo National Park in Pelalawan regency, Riau, has grown as a Sumatran elephant gave birth on Tuesday.

The healthy male elephant was named Harmoni Rimbo and quickly became the center of attention at the Tesso Nilo Festival held in the park from Wednesday to Friday.

“The birth of the baby elephant should encourage all concerned parties that there is still hope [for elephants to live] in the Tesso Nilo National Park,” Wiratno, the Environment and Forestry Ministry’s director general for natural resources and the ecosystem, told Antara on Thursday.

Harmoni Rimbo, or simply Har, was born after cross-mating a male wild elephant and a captive female elephant named Ria, which belongs to the Tesso Nilo Elephant Flying Squad, a joint operation of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia and the Conservation Authority of Riau.

Har is the sixth elephant to be born since the Elephant Flying Squad was formed in 2004.

Ria was detected to be pregnant in May last year. She has already given birth to two elephants, one in 2011 and the second in 2014.

Tesso Nilo Natinal Park chairman Supartono said with the birth of Harmoni Rimbo the park now has eight healthy male elephant.

Please credit and share this article with others using this link:http://www.thejakartapost.com/life/2017/10/31/sumatran-elephant-and-kalimantan-orangutan-born-at-batu-secret-zoo.html