Elephant rescued after slipping into muddy pit after heavy rain in Thailand

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A male dwarf elephant was rescued after falling into a muddy pit after heavy rain in Thailand.

The thirty-eight-year-old elephant named Kotee slipped into the sludge in Surin province on September 7.

The dwarf elephant appeared weakened and was unable to get up on his own as the area was wet and slippery after recent heavy rainstorms.

Locals noticed him struggling and alerted the emergency services who sent wildlife staff to save him.

Footage shows staff from the Suanpa Resort Elephant Camp and the National Institute of Research and Health Service for Elephants using a crane to lift Kotee up from the quagmire and onto dry land — an operation that lasted three hours before the elephant was finally removed.

First-aid shots and saline water were administered to Kotee to help him regain his strength while he was kept upright with a harness. He was released the next day and his condition is currently being monitored by veterinarians as they track him through the forest.

Rescue worker Arnon Chaiya said: ‘The elephant was still quite young so he was inexperienced. We think that he was in the pit for one night before he was found. He was already too weak to get out on his own, so if he had stayed there longer he could have starved.

‘We kept a close watch on Kotee throughout the night and he has now been released.’

Thailand has an estimated 2,000 Asian elephants living in the wild but there is often conflict when they come into contact with humans on roads and in villages. A similar number of elephants are kept captive where they work in zoos and are hired out for religious festivals and weddings.

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