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Kids and Elephants

Storks bring young animals to their parents, who work in a circus. The latter, a baby elephant destined for Mrs. Jumbo, does not arrive until the next day when the circus is on its way to its next location by train.
The elephant is called Jumbo Junior, but when he turns out to have gigantic ears the other elephants make fun of this. They even nickname him Dumbo, a contraction of 'dumb' and his real name Jumbo.


Olifant wassen in Kuala Gandah

One evening, a lone male elephant broke into a door and crashed through the wall of a house, probably looking for food. The thin wall gave way easily under the weight of the huge animal, and chunks of wood and debris fell to the floor from all over the house. But suddenly the elephant heard a child crying in the middle of the room, which was strewn with pieces of rubble. The huge animal stopped and walked slowly towards the child in the bed, while her shocked parents looked on helplessly.
Elephants are known to respond to the sounds of suffering from other animals in the herd with gestures and soothing sounds. All that is known in this case is that, much to the surprise of the family, whose house he had just demolished, the elephant stretched out its trunk and started picking debris from the baby's bed.
The family watched in amazement as the elephant carefully removed the many shards of brick and stone. The mother said, "I can't believe the elephant saved my daughter after she smashed the door and destroyed a wall." The child was taken to hospital and treated for a number of external injuries. She is expected to make a full recovery.


Can YOU see how many legs this elephant has?

Of course you can ride an elephant in mainland Malaysia. That's very fun and exciting. High above the ground on such a mighty animal and then wiggle a little walk. It is the Asian elephant, because it has smaller ears than its African relative. How they got here at the shelter is a sad story. The elephants in Kuala Gandah were all transported to the shelter by truck. Why?

Usually the Asian elephant lives in the jungle. There he looks for his food. They are herbivores. They eat grass, leaves, shrubs and fruit and they use their trunks for that.
The jungle of the elephants is getting smaller and smaller. People are cutting down more and more trees and the area, because they want to build houses, schools, offices and factories. More and more people are born, so forests are cut down. The habitat is getting smaller and smaller.
And then…..the elephants come into the habitat of the people. They enter the fields on the edge of the kampong (village). They walk over fields and destroy or eat the harvest. The farmers don't like that and chase the elephants away. Sometimes one has to be sedated, because it keeps coming back. Then he is taken with a sturdy boat across the river deep into the jungle. There he gets his freedom back. Sometimes that is not possible, because the elephant is still too young. Then he is taken to the shelter in Kuala Gandah. There he is cared for and has a piece of land where he can roam freely. Until it's time for him to go back to the jungle too.
However, sometimes a baby elephant is also left behind, or he is lost. Farmers then see this and report it to the reception centre. These catch the baby elephant and take it to the rescue center.

How do you catch such a wild problem elephant?
If such a wild elephant, causing damage to plantations or kampongs, is spotted, a special team from the rescue center is called in. Their first job, once they locate the adult elephant, is to stun it. This is a difficult job, because the elephant does not want to be caught. It sometimes takes up to a week before the elephant can be stunned with a special gun. Once the elephant is sedated (groggy; not unconscious), the next challenge follows. The problem elephant is obviously not waiting to be taken and loaded onto a truck. Then it takes two elephants with the necessary experience.
The rescue center's two veteran elephants take a seat, each on either side, next to the groggy, wild elephant. These veterans are two trained elephants Mentompian and Abot. These will guide the wild elephant to the waiting truck.
The captive elephant is trucked by the team across the road to a new conservation area. Very often the truck cannot get there and a large part still has to be covered with a sturdy boat. Take a good look at the photos.

It is sad to see the elephants in the sanctuary. They are attached to the concrete floor with strong chains. You can feed them, touch them and take them for a ride. You can bathe or bathe the elephants in a stream on the property. Some people find it shocking to see the animals like this. However, the goal is to put them back in the jungle, but sometimes that is not possible anymore, because the animals are too old.
Meanwhile, a second shelter has been opened in Kuala Setiar.


Elephants on a palm oil plantation

View the rehabilitation centers in:

 

 Ben van Wijnen

 

 

 

 

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