Elephant continues in countrys largest park | Bangkok Post: news

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Elephant slaughter: The gangs get bold

The chief of the country's largest national park says he needs help to combat the well planned poaching campaign that has claimed at least seven of Thailand's national animals in recent years

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In early March, Kaeng Krachan National Park chief Chaiwat Limlikhit-aksorn was outraged to learn of another elephant killing in the area he oversees. A female elephant about 15 years old was discovered close to Krarang 3 Reservoir shot in the head and brutally axed, milk still flowing from her breast. Investigators reasoned that the elephant had a baby with her at the time of the killing. 

WHITE FLIGHT: Park officials suspect that this elephant, photographed on April 10, might be a rare white elephant. There is also speculation that it could be the calf of an elephant found butchered in Kaeng Krachan in early March. Park officials are concerned that a white elephant could become a prime target for poachers PHOTO: COURTESY OF APICHAT PUANGNOI, CHIEF EDITOR OF THE PETCHPOOM NEWSPAPER IN PHETCHABURI PROVINCE.

What happened to the calf remains subject to conjecture. Some suspect it was sold into the illegal wildlife trade. Other officials contend that the calf is the same elephant pictured in a widely circulated photograph taken on April 10 that many believe is a rare white elephant. If that were the case, the calf would be a hugely desirable target for poachers.

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