A man in northern Thailand’s Chiang Mai province has been trampled to death by an elephant at his farm in San Sai district on Thursday. Police said the body Sa-ard Khamsrijai, 68, was found in his garden at his vegetable farm.
His body showed wounds consistent with trampling and a female elephant owned by a local elephant park was found nearby.According to police, the park had taken the elephant out to forage. Park officials said there has been no park visitors since the outbreak of the Covid-19 virus. The elephant was tethered to a tree in the forest but somehow broke free and wandered into Mr. Sa-ard’s farm.
Mr. Sa-ard was allegedly watering his plants when he came across the elephant and tried to shoo it away. The animal panicked and trampled the man. Local police are reportedly filing criminal charges against the elephant park owner.
Fifty Elephants in Need of Support
Meanwhile, Due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak elephant parks and elephant camps are really suffering. Elephants normally reside in tourism camps around Chiang Mai province. However due to the COVID-19 lockdown and the subsequent loss of tourism. Many elephants along with their mahouts have been forced to return to the village. Even more with no work or income.
Elephants typically eat for 18 hours a day, and with over 50 elephants now in the area, it has been a struggle to keep them all happy and well-fed. Furthermore villagers in Huay Pakoot are having to travel 3 hours a day to find food for their elephants.
Some friends who have worked or volunteered on an ethical elephant research project, know how dedicated the elephants’ families are. They have organised a fundraiser to support them. Any donations will help support all the elephants and mahouts in Huay Pakoot village. Covering the costs of food for the elephants and sustaining the community because their income has been taken away.
To thank donors, they are offering a range of virtual rewards, including a poem, cooking class and animal drawing. The biggest donations will earn a virtual ‘meet an elephant’ session with one of the local villagers and one of the beautiful elephants of Huay Pakoot.
For more information you can contact Chigusa Keller at [email protected]