The August 12th Thai people get to show the love to our mother, and we also show it the elephants because it is the World Elephant Day.
An elephants is one of the symbols of Thailand. We have been familiar with elephants in the society and culture for long. Some elephants were so skilful that could be practised to do several tasks, and even became the Royal Elephant with a conferred rank in the archaic time.
Today, we present 6 things of elephants that someone might not ever known how much they are unbelievably similar to us human.
They have Family
When an elephant is born, they are not only being taken care of by their parents, but also others in the herd.
If a calf whines or has a problem, others will quickly look after it, like our relatives.
An elephant usually gives birth to one calf a pregnant, but twins can happen.
When an elephant matures enough, they are sent away from the herd to roam and one day has its own herd – much like when we finish high school or university.
They Use Trunk as Hand
When they touch or pick up something, they use their trunk, just like we use our hands.
Even though it looks difficult to use, and weighs about 200 kilogrammes, it has over hundred-thousand muscles, to control it as precisely as pulling up a single blade of grass.
They use it to drink water, too, by sucking the water up, and squirt it into their mouth, or to their body for cooling.
Moreover, some elephants are righties, others are lefties.
They use their dexterous tusk to pick food, strip leaves and bark off trees, protect themselves, or fight other bull (male) elephants.
They have Fingers and Nails
Asian elephants have 5 front-leg fingers, and 4 at the back, while African’s have one less on each side. Every finger has a fingernail, and they can grow all their lives, like their tusks.
The incredible thing is that, even though elephants are as heavy as 3-6 tonnes, they do not walk on the whole feet, but use the front, rim, and fingers to move forward, like us.
They Know Skin Care
When an elephant finishes finding food, they sometimes use mud to cover themselves.
It is not only to cool them down from the heat, but also keep their skin moist and softer.
Actually, it seems like they know how to do skin spa before us!
Although their skin may look more wrinkled than a hundred-year-old granny, but it has been designed as such to keep moisture inside the skin so that it will not dry.
They Always Say Hi!
Well, not literally “Hi!”, but they greet each other using their trunks. They intertwine their trunks, hug, or gently rub each other, and give one another a friendly bump on the foreheads if they really know the other well. They even know how to show affection and flirt, starting with an alluring side-glance, to kiss, and make a family.
They Care and Never Leave Behind
If an elephant gets sick, the others take care of it, stopping their travelling, until that elephant recovers.
When coming to an end of its live, around 70s as our average, other elephants become sad, grieve, and mourn for a day or more, try to blanket the body with soil, before leaving in silence.
After that, whenever they pass the place, they stop in its tracks, and pay homage to the bones of their dead, gently touching their skulls and tusks with their trunks and feet. This silent moment often lasts several minutes.
Elephants have feeling not different from us. They can be happy, sad, understanding, and comforting each other.
But, we are the only ones who have always made them sad.
By hunting them down from over a hundred million in a few last centuries, there are about 400,000 African elephants left nowadays.
For Asian Elephant, it is more worrying since there are only about 40,000 left in the wild, being endangered.
The whole elephant is killed just for their ivory to make luxurious jewellery and furniture.
Calves are taken for cruel training for hard work. Some are brought to the wealth as a pet.
Others are displayed for show, the joy of human, but force them of their nature and feeling.
A lot become an illegal labour, carrying logs, to sarcastically destroy their own home.
The shockingly less and less forest areas is another main factor making elephants unable to find food, having less new-born rate, smaller herds, until the elephants all over the world continue frighteningly disappearing.
What would happen if there were no elephants?
They are enormous, living in herds, being the largest land creature, they can maintain the ecosystem and are the indicator of how prosperous the forest is.
Their herbivore diet can help the diversity and balance of plants from their rich faeces.
Walking through the forests, they make clearer pathways so that smaller animals can go around finding food and water easier.
In the dry season, while searching for water, they create new waterways to help the thirst of their fellow friends.
When they seek for salt licks, essential for the mineral intakes, digging to get deeper ones can benefit other animals as they need.
The healthy elephants means the healthy animals, healthy forests, healthy environment, healthy world, and certainly healthy human, so it is not a far issue from us at all.
We make this easy-understanding infographic for sharing to your families and friends.
Because while we are happy with our family, elephants should be so in their families as well.
Because we do believe that
One Small Change -can make- One Big Difference