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Tamed elephant dies in central Vietnam; slash found on body

Friday, April 17, 2015, 14:01 GMT+7
Tamed elephant dies in central Vietnam; slash found on body
This image shows the body of a 38-year-old elephant, Y Lun, which died on the bank of the Serepok River in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak on April 15, 2015.

A 38-year-old tamed elephant died on a riverbank in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak on Wednesday, a fortnight after it was slashed while searching for food in a forest, local authorities reported.

>> Baby elephant dies with skin frayed, feet gone, tail severed in central Vietnam The body of the animal, named Y Lun, was found on the bank of the Serepok River in Ea Wer Commune, Buon Don District, commune police officers said. The elephant was owned by a local man, Y Nhuan Hmok, who had raised the animal since 2001. On March 30, Hmok’s family released Y Lun to a forest near their house for the animal to search for food, but later discovered it sustained a serious injury, caused by a slash, to the left thigh. The Dak Lak Elephant Conservation Center took Y Lun to the Yok Don National Park for emergency aid the same day. The center then sent the elephant back home for further treatment and care. The elephant’s health condition stayed normal until April 13, when the animal began refusing to eat, and got increasingly worse until it was found dead on Wednesday night, its owner said. In August 2014, Y Lun had it tail cut off and taken away by unknown people and the animal was treated for over two months for that wound.    A leader at the Dak Lak Elephant Conservation Center said the agency is coordinating with local authorities to find out the cause of the slash on the body of the last tamed elephant in the commune. Four other tamed elephants have died in the province since the beginning of the year because of different causes. The most recent case happened on March 24, 2015, when a baby elephant weighing about 100kg was found dead, with a patch of skin flayed, four feet gone, and a part of the tail severed in forest subzone 71B in Ea H’Leo District.  On March 8, the authorities of Krong Na Commune, Buon Don District said that they had received a report on the death of a 40-year-old elephant.

The animal died of exhaustion while serving tourists at the Ban Don tourist area, according to news website VietNamNet.

Another news website reported that the animal met its end while carrying tourists in the site.

On January 15, another tamed elephant, Book Kham, which was 36 years old, fell down a hill and slipped away.

The provincial elephant conservation center said that the elephant became exhausted and dropped dead in forest subzone 1341 in Lak District.

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