When a risk becomes reality

A very difficult day for our team; this morning we located a group of five elephants very close to our central base.

Our team left on foot backed up by helicopter.

We anaesthetized the first elephant from the ground.

He continued advancing forward, making his way through the extremely dense vegetation. We lost sight of him for several minutes.

By the time we found him, he had fallen into a swamp.

The vet intervened immediately; he administered the antidote to wake him up, and carried out electric shocks, all in vain.

Despite our best efforts, unfortunately we have to report that the elephant died.

The risk of death to the elephants is far greater if they remain in the outskirts of Daloa, than their capture and relocation.

If we had left this elephant where it was, it was certain that he would have been killed, a victim of human-elephant conflict.

It is heartbreaking, disappointing and frustrating for all involved that this elephant has died.

Every precaution has been taken to prevent death or injury to the elephants being captured and IFAW has employed one of the best and most experienced wild animal capture teams in Africa to manage the operation.

Life goes on.

The operation continues.

Other elephants are counting on us.

--CSB

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Experts

Céline Sissler-Bienvenu, Director, France and Francophone Africa
Director, France and Francophone Africa
IFAW Elephant Expert
IFAW Elephant Expert
Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
Regional Director, Asia
James Isiche, Regional Director, East Africa
Regional Director, East Africa
Jason Bell, Program Director, Elephants Regional Director, South Africa
Program Director, Elephants, Regional Director, South Africa
Peter Pueschel, Director, International Environmental Agreements
Director, International Environmental Agreements
Vivek Menon, Director of IFAW partner, Wildlife Trust of India
Regional Director, South Asia