It was a tragic accident that led to the mother and the calf get stuck in the ravine. Both were injured and while the mother could stand, the calf seemed too weak and injured to stand on his own feet. Locals soon found the pair stranded on Thursday and informed the forest officials immediately.
“Once we got the information from the local people, we reached the site on Thursday. We deployed local people to break the rocks to create a wider passage and free the elephants. We later alerted WTI veterinarians as the elephants had injuries,” said Druno Hanse, Ouguri Range Officer.
The team comprised staff from the Assam Forest Department and veterinarians from IFAW-WTI run Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC), and two Mobile Veterinary Service (MVS) units – the JTEF – supported MVS Karbi Anglong and the GAIL – supported MVS Central Assam.
The team decided to help the calf first as it looked more injured and vulnerable.
“The calf was severely injured and vulnerable, so we began work to get it out first,” said Dr Bhaskar Choudhury, IFAW-WTI veterinarian.
Six members of the team then entered the ravine, found a suitable exit point, and fit a sling around the baby. Other team members and villagers then helped lift him out of danger. It was then hastily carried down the hill in a stretcher to treat it for its wounds, starvation and severe dehydration.
Meanwhile inside the ravine, the team continued to try and save the mother. Unfortunately the elephant succumbed to her injuries.The baby will now be hand raised in CWRC along with other orphaned elephants. Its condition is said to have stabilized.
Although a life was lost, one precious one was saved because of timely information from local villagers. The officials thanked these locals for their vital contribution is saving an animal life.
Article reference: WTI
Image courtesy: Sashanka Barbaruah/ WTI