- Jul 25, 2011
No need to cry anymore Raju! The elephant whose tears captured the hearts of millions is finally declared free from his former owners
Raju was held in chains for more than 50 years by abusive owners in India
The animal bled from spiked shackles and lived on hand-outs from tourists
Was freed from captivity earlier this year by a UK-based wildlife charity
Elephant was seen to be shedding tears of joy when he was released
However former owners had launched a legal bid to reclaim the animal
But an Indian court ruled he is to stay with conservationists Wildlife SOS
Mr Satyanarayan added: 'Raju and our herd of hope are the lucky ones. But there are 67 performing elephants in India – many of which suffer daily beatings in order to make them perform.
'We're already planning our next rescue – the desperate case of a blind elephant who is forced to perform even though she can't see for crowds. It's a pitiful case and we need to free her so she can join Raju.
'Now the public can help him live out a dignified life in peace with even a small donation,' Mr said Kartick, whose charity is dependent on public donations.
'All these elephants have known from human beings is pain and suffering – now we're asking to help us help him live out their days, with grass under their feet – free from humiliation and pain.'
To donate see Welcome to Wildlife SOS.
Christmas 2014 was an auspicious occasion for us. Not only had bountiful end of year rains transformed Tsavo, a normally arid environment into a lush green jungle adorned with wild flowers and pulsating with life, but waterholes were filled with rain water and so for elephants and others food and water was readily available for all. So it was the festive season for the elephants, the natural world generally, and for the humans who were there as the custodians of the many orphaned elephants, many of whom were now living wild. On the 23rd of December Angela and the family together with Daphne had turned up to enjoy the Ithumba dependent orphans noon mud bath, now transformed into a mini lake, where the elephants could romp and play submerging themselves during the heat of the day to cool their over heated bodies.
The icing on the Xmas cake for us was an event that took place a 100 miles away at the same time at the Trust’s Voi rehabilitation unit. Ex orphan EMILY, who had been absent for much of the latter part of 2014 living a normal wild elephant life walked back to the stockades at 10.30 am on the 23rd of December to give birth to her 2nd wild born calf in the company of her erstwhile human family of Keepers who had been instrumental in her own upbringing during her formative years. This was witnessed and captured on film by the Keepers and the event was filled with trumpets and rumbles of joy from EMILY’s satellite herd of ex orphans who had accompanied her back, all of whom were eager to gently help get the new precious bundle to its feet, nudging it gently, and using their trunks to lift the baby. It was another daughter for EMILY named Emma, a little sister for EMILY’s first born Eve, who was born on the 11th of December 2008.
EMILY was orphaned in early infancy when she fell down a disused pit latrine near the Manyani Prison Camp which abuts Tsavo East National Park in 1993. She completed her milk dependent years at the Trust’s Nairobi Park Elephant Nursery before being transferred to the Trust’s Tsavo East Voi rehabilitation facility to embark on her journey back to her birthright – a normal wild life amongst the wild elephant community of the area. In the fullness of time she morphed into an extremely able matriarch, leading and guiding the younger orphans who were part of her orphaned herd and who originated from almost every elephant population throughout Kenya with even a Ugandan elephant Mweya in the mix.
EMILY is a gentle and loving elephant who transcends both worlds. She is extremely well known globally thanks to BBC’s highly acclaimed Elephant Diaries series, and the two 60 Minutes shows highlighting the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s work with special emphasis on EMILY’s story. She has once again rewritten her story by amazing us further in choosing to share such an intimate moment, seldom witnessed by anyone, with those who she trusts and loves, her human Keepers. EMILY knew that in their company she and her calf would remain safe from predators and because elephants never forget she will always love and trust the Keepers who have played such an important role in saving her life. Never could there be more tangible proof than her willingness to share her precious wild born babies with them, even allowing them to witness the birth of little ‘Emma’.
Emma is doing well and EMILY’s herd of ex orphans have remained in the orbit of the Voi stockades choosing to visit the Keepers and the dependent Voi Orphans every day since the 23rd of December with their most treasured brand new little package. Of course Emma’s presence has sent all the Voi orphans into a euphoric state as they love nothing more than tiny babies, and now they have another they can call their very own.
EMILY, who was so cruelly robbed of her elephant family when just a baby herself now has two female calves of her very own and a blood bond that will last a life time together. Sharing her family joy makes the hard work, and the much heartbreak we experience at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust worthwhile, and we thank those around the world who make our work possible. We are thrilled to share this story with you all.
Slash is not only super guitarist, he is also very involved in the elephants' situation. When former Guns N 'Roses star played in South Africa in 2013, he knew that the animals become fewer, but not how serious the situation is.
During his trip in South Africa Slash learned more about the growing illegal ivory industry
"I was shocked to poachers are still getting away with it. Many people do not understand that if they buy an item with just a hint of ivory, it still comes from a dead elephant. If more knew, it could have a dramatic effect on the ivory trade", Slash says in an interview in Rolling Stone.
Now he hopes that the new single "Beneath the savage sun", which is about poaching of elephants, will mean an awakening and thereby a change. All proceeds from the single will go to the international animal rights organization IFAW
After three and a half years of trying to convince and invite many elephant camp management teams, owners, family members of their business to change the way of their business to be more humane, today I would like to announce the best news of this year to all of you to know that , the biggest camp of Karnchanaburi at Saiyok district , made the decision to stop elephant riding and elephant shows of their own program, and our team will come to help to work at the project to change to be an Elephant Nature Park Model. It means that we can release 60 elephants free from work. We applaud their soulful decision. I hope that more elephant camps in Thailand will do the same way in the near future. Thanks to every one for your support and to be part of this big change. Special thanks to Khun NuNa Silpa-archa and to my husband Darrick Thomson , who always stands beside to support my work. By Lek Chialert
[video=youtube;SoPLVSFKdaA]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoPLVSFKdaA[/video]Another good program now begins at the camp opposite of our Park called the Elephant Care program. This program is run under our supervision and consultation. The project is being run by the local villager there, to take the elephant out of riding. The visitor will spend all day long to walk with the elephant, to forage, swim and play in the river and roll in the mud. If you want to spend all day long with the elephant, to help rehab them and bring them to roam free, please come to support this good program.
We need volunteers every day to participate with this exciting program of learning to care for elephants and therefor show the world that elephants can respond better to love than they can to bull hooks. We believe caring people can learn to communicate with elephants within 1 day.
This project is intended to be a single day activity and therefore not appropriate for people who want to experience volunteering for longer period.
http://www.elephantnaturepark.org/enp/en/49-elephant-careSchedule of the day
8:00am - 8:30am pick up from your Chiang Mai city hotel or 7:40am from our office
After a safety talk, learn the basic concept and language to use through out the day with the elephants and prepare food items to take across the river to meet the elephants.
Cross the river & cut more food supplies and meet the elephants. Feed and learn to communicate and motivate with care and love
After lunch continue with elephant communication and experience walking with them to the river and even swimming nearby.
*Return to the Elephant Kitchen and prepare more food for the following days feeding.
*(The kitchen is visited if time allows. During the rainy season the walk may take longer which may not permit this activity. If this is the case, guides will introduce you to some of the herd at the park.)
4:00pm - Depart Elephant Nature Park and return to Chiang Mai at about 5:30pm.