Malaysia: Ordeal over for chained elephant

Muhammad Apendy Issahak New Straits Times 13 May 18;

GERIK: A wild elephant that was caught near the Titiwangsa Rest and Relax (R&R) area and chained by the side of the Timur Barat Highway has been relocated by the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) today.

After having been chained for seven days much to the dismay of social media users, Perhilitan's operation to relocate the elephant was aided by the National Elephant Conservation Centre, the police as well as the People's Volunteer Corps (Rela).

It is understood that the elephant had been spotted roaming near the R&R before it was captured and chained.

Perak Perhilitan deputy director Wan Shaharuddin Wan Nordin said the operation began at 9am with the help of two other elephants, Rambai and Abot, which were brought in by the conservation centre.

Police helped to cordon off the area and close the roads in order to ensure public safety, Wan Shaharuddin said.

The elephant, estimated to be about 20 years old, was moved by a lorry to its natural habitat.

Meanwhile, Gerik district police chied Supt Ismail Che Isa when contacted said his men from Bersia police station were sent to help with the relocation process.

"I understand the elephant was moved to the Sungai Deka forest in Terengganu," he said, informing that the operation was a success and the elephant was not harmed in the process.

Pictures and video of the elephant chained by the highway has since gone viral with many expressing their anger over the animal's limited movement due to the chains.


Elephant that wandered to highway rest area successfully relocated
victoria brown The Star 13 May 18;

PETALING JAYA: The Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) has successfully relocated a wild elephant that had wandered to a Titiwangsa highway rest stop.

Videos of the elephant, which was named Yeop Viral, went viral on social media after it was caught on camera destroying fences near the rest stop.

Perhilitan said that the operation to relocate the 3.5-tonne elephant to the Sungai Deka Elephant Sanctuary Hulu Terengganu a success.

"Hopefully Yeop Viral is safe and comfortable in its new location! Bon Voyage Yeop," said Perhilitan in a Facebook posting.

However, the slope where the elephant was captured forced the team to temporarily hold it in the area so that the team can sort out the logistics in moving the elephant.

Perhilitan said that a veterinary officer was stationed with the elephant to monitor its health and diet, in accordance to its standard operating procedure.

The elephant was also regularly checked to ensure that it was not injured by its chains.

Perhilitan utilised elephants named Abot and Rambai to help lead Yeop out of the area and onto the transport vehicle, where he was restrained.

In general, the rise of human conflicts with wild elephants is large due to humans encroaching into elephant's traditional habitats.

Experts say that elephants would follow their instincts and go through their usual routes, even if they have been developed by humans.

Studies have found human-elephant conflicts arising from animals raiding crops, injuries/deaths to humans caused by elephants, and humans killing elephants as they are seen as a nuisance.

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