The Dak Lak Elephant Conservation Center has confirmed that a wild elephant calf died, possibly after getting stuck in a pond near a local farm where its herd was searching for food.
The elephant calf was found dead in a muddy pond in Dak Lak Province on February 17, 2016. Photo: Nguyen Binh
On Wednesday, some residents found the dead animal near the farm of Nguyen Van Danh at Cu Mgar District in Dak Lak Province. It was around one year old weighing about 200 kilograms.
Pham Van Lang, deputy director of the conservation center, said the calf might have been caught in the muddy pond while drinking water from it.
“There is no sign of the animal being attacked,” he said, adding that there were footprints around, possibly of other elephants trying to rescue the calf.
Lang’s center has decided to preserve the elephant’s carcass for research and display.
Earlier many residents reported about a herd of some 10 elephants searching for food and destroying crops in the area.
“We have instructed local residents how to lure the elephants away without getting attacked or harming the animals,” he said.
The number of wild elephants in Vietnam has fallen from 2,000 in the 1980s to less than 100 recently.
Home to one of the country's largest elephant herds, Dak Lak Province with a vast area of forest land used have more than 550 wild elephants in 1980. But the number has shrunk to five herds with a total of 60-65 individuals.