Herd Of Asian Elephants Is Heading Towards Major City In China After Unexpected 500Km Trek

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Herd Of Asian Elephants Is Heading Towards Major City In China After Unexpected 500Km Trek

A herd of elephants has become world-famous after being tracked for a year on a 500km journey in China. A journey that was both unexpected and is now posing problems for the human population.


The elephants first came to prominence in China but were soon picked up by international media outlets and their escapades have been documented both on social-media and on streaming sites.


The elephants are usually at home in a wildlife reserve in mountainous southwest Yunnan province and have wowed people from across the globe. Many have been left transfixed as the elephants overcome obstacles, such as getting stuck in a ditch, and as they continue their epic journey.


Other adventures of the 15-elephant herd include being watched walking down urban streets, raiding farms for food and water, and even exploring people's houses. They are believed to have caused over $1 million in damages.


They have been tracked in part by camera crews on the ground and by drones.


This epic journey is not normal. Asian elephants tend to stick to their own area unless they have been disturbed, prompting many wildlife experts to ask why the elephants have gone so far.


Nilanga Jayasinghe, manager for Asian species conservation at the World Wildlife Fund, said:


"In this case, we don't really know why they left their home range, but do know that there has been significant habitat loss due to agriculture and conversion of forests into plantations within that range in the last few decades. What possibly happened here is that in their search for new habitat, they got lost along the way and kept going."


They added:


"This is a real-time example of the importance of addressing the issue and its root causes for the benefit of both wildlife and people."


Chinese law states that elephants are a protected species, and this means that they can't be killed or hurt in any way. Therefore, authorities are trying to find other ways to keep them from going near urban areas, a particular worry as they are now heading towards the outskirts of Kunming, a city of 7 million.


One tactic the authorities are using is to try and guide the elephant herd using food.


At present, there are less than 50,000 Asian elephants left in the wild.


[h/t: Bloomberg]


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Thinking Humanity: Herd Of Asian Elephants Is Heading Towards Major City In China After Unexpected 500Km Trek
Herd Of Asian Elephants Is Heading Towards Major City In China After Unexpected 500Km Trek
A herd of elephants has become world-famous after being tracked for a year on a 500km journey in China. A journey that was both unexpected and is now
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