The elephants from the city camps were sent to the bases in the villages because of the suspension of the elephant camps, said U Kyaw Htaik, deputy general manager of the Myanma Timber Enterprise. The tourism businesses were halted because of COVID-19 outbreak and the elephant camps related to the tourism industry were also suspended, he added.
The elephants from Bodhi Ta Htaung camp and Wingabaw camp opened in the cities were sent to the elephant camps in the villages. Besides, the government and other charities organizations donated the funds to buy the foods for elephants, which are not sent to the bases in the villages.
People are not allowed to enter the elephant camps starting from 24 March. During the suspension period, the elephants from the city camps are taken care through regular activities such as being released in the forest, watching and showing under the instruction of the Myanma Timber Enterprise. When we are permitted to reopen the elephant camp, we have prepared to provide better services in line with the guidance of the Ministry of Health and Sports. MTE operates 22 elephant camps in Sagaing, Mandalay, Ayeyawady, Magway and Bago regions and Chin, Rakhine and Shan states. The enterprise conserved around 200 elephants nationwide. —Aung Thura (Translated by Hay Mar)