GUWAHATI: A pregnant elephant and a male calf were found dead at Borbhetagaon in karbi Anglong bordering Kaziranga National Park.
"Carcasses of two elephants were found in Karbi Anglong district bordering Kaziranga National Park on Sunday. The carcasses of a pregnant elephant and a male calf were found at Borbhetagaon, east side of Forest Range Office, Dolamora bordering EAWL Division," a government release said.
A forest Department spokesman said that Wildlife veterinarians from the Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation in Kaziranga conducted the post-mortems.
According to preliminary investigations, the elephants died as a result of probable poisoning. The Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 has been used to register cases, this year, 70 elephants have died from various causes, stated by the spokesman.
Three wild elephants perished from poisoning, 18 from lightning, 24 from natural causes, 17 from unknown causes, four from train accidents, three from electrocution, and one from injury, according to him.
Between 2011 and 2019, approximately 91 elephants were electrocuted in Assam, according to official records. A lightning strike in Nagaon district killed 18 jumbos in May. According to the last census conducted in 2017, Assam has the second largest elephant population in India after Karnataka (6049). It is home to 5,719 Asian elephants. Human-elephant conflict is on the rise in Assam as a result of deforestation and a lack of fodder.
In the last ten years, 890 people have died in Assam due to human-elephant conflicts; with Sonitpur district having the most deaths (124), followed by Udalguri district (118), and Goalpara district (78). According to wildlife officials, over 100 people which includes women, have died so far this year as a result of elephant attacks in various districts of Assam.
There are currently 134,425 species on the IUCN Red List, with 37,480 of them being endangered with extinction.
"Elephants from Africa play important roles in ecosystems, economy, and our collective imagination around the world." "Today's updated IUCN Red List assessments of both African elephant species highlight the ongoing threats these iconic animals confront," stated IUCN Director General Dr Bruno Oberle. "Poaching must be stopped immediately and sufficient acceptable habitat for both forest and savanna elephants must be preserved." Several African countries have taken the lead in recent years, demonstrating that elephant declines can be reversed, and we must work together to guarantee that their example is replicated."
The most recent studies show a widespread drop in African elephant populations across the continent. Over a 31-year period, the population of African forest elephants plummeted by more than 86 percent, while the population of African savanna elephants decreased by more than 86 percent.