mandag 9. august 2021

China’s herd of wandering elephants finally heads for home

After an epic 17-month journey that made international headlines, China’s famous herd of wandering elephants appears to finally be heading home. The 14 Asian elephants of various sizes and ages were guided across the Yuanjiang river in Yunnan on Sunday night and a path was being made for them to return to the nature reserve in the Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture, the Associated Press reported.

As of Sunday night, the herd was still in Yuanjiang County, approximately 200km (125 miles) from the reserve. The elephants’ return completes a more than 500km odyssey that captivated the country. The highlights of their trip included the birth of a calf in Pu’er in November; causing more than 6.8m yuan ($1.07m) in damage, according to estimates by state broadcaster CGTN; and going viral for taking a nap.

In June, drone footage showed the herd sleeping in a forest outside a village in Xiyang township. When they started moving again, more than 410 emergency personnel, 374 vehicles and 14 drones were deployed with more than two tonnes of elephant food.