Vietnamese elephant injured by poacher's snare recovers after treatment

By Ngoc Quyen, Thanh Nien News

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Khajohnpat Boonprasert, an elephant veterinarian from Thailand’s National Elephant Institute, treats the wounds on the male elephant at the Dak Lak Elephant Conservation Center in April. Photo: Ngoc Quyen

A young elephant rescued from a poacher's trap in the Central Highlands is currently in better condition after being treated for severe wounds. 
Dak Lak Province's Elephant Conservation Center said the male, around three years old, was found by residents in the Yok Don National Park in February with trunk and leg wounds.
The elephant was then brought to the center for medical treatment.
On April 18, Khajohnpat Boonprasert, an elephant veterinarian at Thailand’s National Elephant Institute, and two Thai mahouts arrived at the center to help treat the elephant as requested.
They anesthetized the elephant, cleaned the wounds and dressed them.
After one week of treatment, the elephant got better.
As his wounds start to heal, he walks more easily than before.
Pham Van Thinh, a veterinarian of the Dak Lak Elephant Conservation Center, said the center does not have much experience in treating wild elephants hurt by traps.
During the Thai experts' one-week visit, the center learned a lot, he said.
The center expects the elephant to fully recover in the next two months.
Home to one of the largest elephant herds, Dak Lak Province's forests used to be inhabited by more than 550 wild elephants in 1980.
However, the number has significantly shrunk to five herds with a total of 60-65 individuals. Some 20 wild elephants have died since 2009.
Meanwhile, the number of domestic elephants in the province has also reduced from 502 individuals in 1980 to only 43.

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