Dao Rueng is still living happily with her best friend Boon Chuey. The two ladies have been adjusting nicely to their new larger enclosure, and are now feeling quite at home.
Our gentle giant Dao Rueng particularly loves to spend the mornings and afternoons playing and splashing in her larger lake, while her sassy friend Boon Chuey watches over her from the dry and. On very hot days the two ladies can be found standing side by side in their gazebo, happily napping together in the shade.
Boon Chuey is still living happily with her best friend Dao Rueng. Next to their new enclosure is a piece of undeveloped forest, which the two ladies now get to explore everyday. Their volunteering team chops pineapple, corn, watermelons and papaya into buckets of bite sized pieces in preparation for their walk. They then use these buckets as positive reinforcement to guide the two ladies down the road to the entrance of the new piece of forest. Speedy Boon Chuey gets to the forest first, with Dao Rueng her friend ambling along behind slowly but steadily. Together they explore the shady patch of trees, enjoying the daily change of scenery.
Boon Mee is a particularly food motivated elephant. At the moment she is thoroughly enjoying the mangos and jackfruit which are in season, snacking on them as they fall and roll into her enclosure.
Her volunteers have been careful to collect a portion of the fruit from the ground each day, to prevent her from over-eating and developing bloat. Having too much fruit available is a great problem for an elephant to have!
Pai Lin continues to be WFFT’s oldest elephant and despite a case of arthritis, she remains in excellent health. Pai Lin is an avid swimmer, and has recently decided that during her morning walks she enjoys swimming in the large lake across the road from the WFFT center. Her volunteers often take her for exercise to keep her joints active, however during the hot season even an early morning walk is too warm for her, and she will occasionally decide to plunge into the water to cool herself off.
Rhung Thip is turning into quite the sassy old lady as she settles fully into retirement. She is now living in one of our most densely forested enclosures with plenty of privacy. Though usually cranky with most people and most elephants, she is particularly fond of one of WFFT’s younger elephants Wassana. These two now live together in their large forested enclosure.
Rhung Thip’s arthritis in her front legs continues to restrict her movements, causing her to walk very slowly. However, she spends her time slowly exploring her forest, creating new paths through the trees and finding enrichments hidden in the treetops by WFFT’s volunteers.
Duen Phen is still happily living in WFFT’s wildest, largest elephant enclosure with her two friends See Puak and Nam Phon. Duen Phen is the most submissive of the three, and will follow along behind the other two ladies at a bit of a distance. While See Puak and Nam Phon are quite curious about human visitors at the enclosure, Duen Phen sometimes prefers to be by herself. Because these ladies have so much space to roam, whenever Duen Phen is feeling shy she is able to stay hidden in the trees away from people and the other elephants.
Nam Phon is still happily living in WFFT’s wildest, largest elephant enclosure with her two friends See Puak and Duen Phen. Nam Phon spends her days following closely behind See Puak, the leader of their herd. These two are always exploring their 3 hectares of forest or swimming in their two ponds. Nam Phon love to use her trunk as a snorkel as she plunges completely under water to cool off.
This month the lovely See Puak is celebrating her 6 year anniversary at Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand! On April 21st 2011 See Puak was rescued from an elephant camp in the province of Surin, where she was exploited and abused for tourist gratification and entertainment.
See Puak continues to enjoy her retirement from the tourism industry, roaming freely in WFFT’s largest elephant enclosure with her two friends Nam Fon and Duen Phen. See Puak will spend her remaining years in retirement at WFFT, enjoying a peaceful life free from the demands of human beings.
Kaew Petch in her little herd of four is now living in an expanded enclosure with her friends La Ong Dao, Pun and her calf Pin. These four ladies have even more room to roam, and a variety of habitat to explore including open grassy fields and forested areas. The new trees in their enclosure provide shade and act as scratching posts for the elephants.
When Kaew Petch first arrived at WFFT she had difficulty using her trunk, as she had always been fed directly into her mouth. Now, she happily showers herself with water and mud from her lake without issue. She is also able to pass along her newfound knowledge to young Pin as she gets the opportunity to help raise a calf.
La Ong Dao
La Ong Dao is still the matriarch of her happy little herd. She is now living in an expanded enclosure with her friends Kaew Petch, Pun and her calf Pin. WFFT has been trying to introduce another elephant - Jele - into this herd, as Jele and the young calf Pin are very interested in playing and spending time with each other.
Unfortunately, La Ong Dao is extremely protective over the baby Pin, and is hesitant to allow another elephant into the group. WFFT has Jele and La Ong Dao’s herd living next door to each other, in the hopes that they will one day learn to get along.
When Khan Kluey first arrived at Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand he was a young, traumatized calf with understandably poor manners. Over the years he has grown big and strong under the careful watch of his surrogate mother Somboon and the WFFT team. He now resides in a specialized concrete enclosure, where no humans come in contact with him.
Because of Khan Kluey’s young age and his history, he is extremely aggressive and dangerous. His teams continue to create enrichments which will provide him entertainment without risking the safety of our staff and volunteers.
Somboon is still living happily with her adopted son Khan Kluey, who is continuing to grow big and strong alongside her. We ensure the young bull and his mother get plenty of privacy from humans except for during feeding time.
Somboon particularly enjoys when her volunteers make banana balls. These balls are a combination of mushed bananas, bran and hay pellets rolled together, occasionally with salt and tamarind to aid digestion. When Somboon requires vitamins or medications her volunteers are able to hide them inside of the banana ball mixture, keeping her healthy and happy.
Khao Khun [based at WFFT Laos Sanctuary]
Khao Khun is enjoying her life at the WFFT Laos rescue center, and particularly enjoys her daily walk from her night den out to the huge open expanse behind the center. She is left out there to wander during the day, where she is free from human contact, and is able to graze in the foliage and swim in the lake at her leisure.
At the end of the day when she is brought back to her night den, enrichments are waiting for her. Her favorite enrichment at the moment is an ice treat, which is a large block of fruit frozen in water. Khao Khun always gets excited when she sees the ice treat, flapping her ears happily.