(9 June) The elephant calf that fell into a deep well in Rayong province has been safely rescued by wary officials who had to keep their eyes on the nearby elephant horde.
Earlier in the day, Mr. Samphan Polpo, director of Chamao-Khao Wong National Park Rangers received reports from locals that an elephant calf was stuck in 4 meter deep and 1 meter wide flooded hole, which situated near an abandoned house next to Tubmon-Pawa Road in Tubmon district.
The elephant is estimated to be 1 month old and weigh around 100 kilograms. It could be seen struggling to stay afloat when the rangers arrived with a backhoe truck. Locals told the rescue team that they had been hearing the trapped elephant′s "pathetic" cries all night. It is believed the elephant′s baby might stray into the well during its search for food.
Officials deployed the backhoe truck to extend the width of the hole′s rim so the volunteers could drag the elephant up. The rescue team and the watching locals remained tense throughout the operation because around 20 fully grown elephants were wandering nearby, including the elephant′s mother.
Rangers feared the mother might be mistaken that the rescue party was hurting its baby and lead a charge against the crowding humans.
Eventually, the elephant baby was brought up. It was in safe condition but very exhausted, as it had been in water for hours. Its legs bled lightly. Shortly afterwards, the elephant started to panic and flick its trunk around, so the rangers surrounded the animal from a distance and drove the elephant calf into the forest, where it joined its mother.