All poisoned elephants on road to full recovery

 | Mon 8 Mar 2021 12:35 ICT

The five elephants rushed to hospital last week from paraquat poisoning will make a full recovery, said the Lampang Elephant Hospital.

Last week seven elephants ingested the dangerous herbicide with five falling critically ill and having to be rushed to the hospital. They will be able to return home to Omkoi District within a fortnight.

According to authorities, twenty five elephants have been poisoned by this herbicide over the past decade, with seven having died from it.

Through donations from the private sector, three elephants were initially taken to the hospital, the journey taking two days due to challenges in transportation and the remote area of Omkoi from which the elephants travelled. The remaining two were taken one day later. All were suffering from burns to the mouth and tongue.

These elephants had previously returned to their owners in Omkoi from various elephant camps due to lack of income from the pandemic, forcing camps to close and unable to feed elephants.

It is believed that baby elephants found containers of the herbicide and played with them, spreading the content around the vicinity of the herd.

Two of the elephants were a mother (15 years old) and her one year old son, while the others were 18, 10 and two years old.

None of the elephants were eating when they arrived at the hospital and veterinarians were concerned that they were listless and not very responsive. All elephants responded well to treatment, said the vets and are now eating and drinking on their own.

The elephants will remain under observation for the next two weeks.