As we have reported this past year, elephants and those who care for them are struggling due to the lack of tourists these days.
Earlier today, Tanwa, a nine year old elephant from the Mae Taeng Elephant camp, put brush in trunk and painted this extraordinarily detailed painting (with supervision and a great deal of help from its mahout and carers) in order to raise funds for Tanwa’s friend Dumbo who requires money to build a shelter in his home in Mae Hong Son.
Dumbo, who used to reside in the same camp as Tanwa, has reportedly been ill the past few weeks from over exposure and eating dirt.
A spokesperson for the camp told CityNews that Dumbo, 6, used to live in a camp in Mae Taeng alongside Tanwa, but after all camps were closed due to the virus, Dumbo recently returned home to Mae La Noi, Mae Hong Son with his mother, Mae Boon.
But because Dumbo had been domesticated for so long, he was unable to survive in the jungle and was found to be lying on the ground ill, believed to have been there for many days. It is believed that Dumbo ate grass covered in mud and became constipated. Veterinarians from Chiang Mai University have now cared for Dumbo who is reportedly in good health.
Dumbo was apparently sent home along with his mother, Mae Boon, both of whom are now left alone in the jungle.
It is hoped that this painting will sell in an online auction and raise between 150,000-200,000, all of which will go towards building a shelter and caring for the mother and child, say that camp rep.
The auction will be open until the 30th of June, with current bidding at 5,000 baht. There has also been a further 39,000 baht donated so far from people who didn’t wish to join the auction, but wished to contribute.