Full width home advertisement

Post Page Advertisement [Top]

Elephant Herd Crashing Towards Chinese City, Expert Says Leader May Lack ‘Experience,’ ‘Led The Whole Group Astray’


A herd of 15 elephants is reportedly making its way towards a major city in China as residents and officials track the situation.

The elephants walked 300 miles from a nature reserve. Officials said they are not sure why the group left the reserve close to the city of Pu’er last year. The Pu’er area is reportedly known for cultivating tea. The group was originally composed of 16 animals, but the Chinese government said two went back home and a baby was born during the trek, according to the Associated Press.The outlet reported that the group was in Yuxi on Wednesday, which is approximately 12 miles from Kunming, a city of 7 million citizens, the official Xinhua News Agency stated. “It said images taken by drones used to track the herd show six female and three male adults, three juveniles and three calves,” per the AP. 

Chen Mingyong, an expert on Asian elephants was cited by the Xinhua News Agency, saying that the situation was the lengthiest migration of wild elephants by distance recorded in the country. Chen said it was possible the group’s leader “lacks experience and led the whole group astray.”

“We have no way of telling where they are going,” Mingyong, told state broadcaster CCTV, per The Washington Post. “It is common for Asian elephants to migrate, but in the past that has mostly been to look for food within their habitats,” he said. “An exodus this far north is quite rare.”

A task force was tracking the elephants, according to Xinhau, consisting of 360 people with 76 cars and nine drones. The official news agency stated that last week, the group walked through the town of Eshan for six hours as citizens were told to remain inside. “Damage done by the elephants to farmland is estimated at 6.8 million yuan ($1.1 million), according to Xinhua,” the AP noted. 

Newsweek reported that on Tuesday, the elephants appeared outside of a retirement home, and stuck their trunks into a couple of the rooms. “Jimu News, an online news channel, interviewed the residents who had been startled by the elephants. One elderly man had been scared when an elephant poked its trunk into his room, and hid under his bed,” according to Newsweek.

The government of the somewhat rural Jinning district near the large city of Kunming distributed information asking citizens not to keep food, such as corn, in their yards that might lure the elephants. Residents were also urged to refrain from contact with the herd. 

“It was ‘forbidden to surround and gawk at the elephants’ or to disturb them by using firecrackers or other materials, the notice said,” per Newsweek.

Reuters reported that while it is not evident why the elephants are heading north, “the Xinhua report said a decline in edible plants in forest habitats has put pressure on the animals, whose numbers have grown in Yunnan in recent decades.”

According to The Post, Becky Shu Chen, a conservation project coordinator at the Zoological Society of London, said, “We’ve seen elephants expanding their range for decades now, as their populations increase, and they search for more food for the growing herd.” 

“You could say that the increase in agricultural land and plantations in their territory is, for elephants, like finding a big sweet shop, right on their doorstep,” she sai

No comments:

Post a Comment

Bottom Ad [Post Page]