Rare Sumatran Elephant Dies After Week-Long Standoff in Indonesia


The endangered Sumatran elephant is easier to see in captivity. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

After a week spent blocking an important local road in Indonesia, a female Sumatran elephant died on Sunday.

Though the exact cause of death remains uncertain, the elephant's death highlights an increasing tension between villagers and wildlife.READ MORE: Killing of Five Endangered Elephants Hints at a Greater Conservation Dilemma

Adit Gunawan, a local conservation agency official, explained:

It was hungry. We gave it food, water and medical attention. We tried our best to nurse it back to health but it wasn't getting better and died on Saturday evening.

The elephant and her calf had been blocking the entrance to a housing complex for a week. Because of this, a local news agency said, it is possible that the elephant may have been poisoned.

Gunawan said that the surviving calf would be brought to a rehabilitation facility and likely would return to the wild.

Fewer than 3,500 Sumatran elephants are thought to survive outside captivity.

Read more about conservation in Indonesia:
Endangered Elephants and Tigers Get to Keep More of Their Sumatran Habitat Thanks to Government National Park Decision
Malaysia and Indonesia To Expand Domestic Palm Oil Biodiesel as Commodity Price Drops
UN says Palm Oil Industry is Wiping out the Orang Utan

Tags: Animals | Conservation | Endangered Species