Two elephants die of electrocution in Sumatra

Banda Aceh, Aceh (ANTARA News) - Two Sumatran elephants were found dead due to suspected electrocution in East Aceh District of Sumatras Province of Aceh on Sunday.

"The carcasses of the elephants were found completely with their tusks. The elephants were suspected to have died after they came in contact with an electric fence installed by local residents," Head of Natural Resource Conservation Agency (BKSDA) of Aceh, Sapto Aji Prabowo said here on Monday.

The dead elephants were found by the locals in Semedang Jaya Hamlet, Seumanah Jaya Gampong, Rantau Peuruelak, East Aceh, on Sunday at around 11.00 a.m. local time. They then reported the incident to Leuser Conservation Forum and to the BKSDA of Aceh.

The elephants were a 10-year-old male and a 20-year-old female.

A joint team of BKSDA of Aceh, Environment and Forestry Law Enforcement Agency of Sumatra, East Aceh Police, and Leuser Conservation Forum has been deployed to the location to conduct autopsy of the elephants.

"The autopsy was done by taking samples from organs to be tested in laboratory. The result of the autopsy and the temporary conclusion showed that the elephants died due to electrocution," Prabowo revealed.

The autopsy result showed that the elephants died on Saturday night (Oct 14).

BKSDA has filed a report with the local police of East Aceh.

"We hope the law is enforced in this case. We also call on residents not to install electric fence around their garden as it not only threatens wildlife but also humans themselves," Prabowo remarked.

The degradation of natural habitat due to deforestation has become a major problem in Indonesias Sumatra Island. This often leads to conflict between wild life and human as animals are driven from their forest habitats, which are fast disappearing.

Sumatra Island is home to several endemic species such as Sumatran elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus), Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae), orangutan (Pongo abelii), and sun bear (Helarctos malayanus), all of which are threatened species.

Source: ANTARA News

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