KOCHI: An elephant calf that fell into an abandoned pit was rescued and released in the wild by the forest department on Tuesday.
Residents of Chakkimedu, a hamlet located on the forest fringe area of Vadattupara in Ernakulam district, woke up on Tuesday hearing the trumpeting of elephants. The herd had entered a farm land close to the forest in search of food when the calf fell in the pit. As attempts to rescue the calf failed, the herd returned to the forest by dawn break.
On receiving the information, a forest team reached the spot and rescued the animal after a two-hour struggle. An earth mover was brought to break the sidewall and make a slope for the calf to get out of the pit.
The calf, aged between 3 to 6 months, had scars on its body and a swelling on its left hind leg. When local residents reached the spot, the calf was exhausted and was lying down in the mud. As rescue workers approached, it panicked.
"There were some bruises on the elephant calf's body but they were not deep. There was a swelling on its hind leg and the calf was struggling to stand up. As the injury did not look serious, we have released the calf into the forest. The herd usually don't accept elephants with serious injuries or disabilities. Our forest guards are monitoring the calf and if the herd rejects it, we will bring it
back and give treatment," said Thundathil range officer Mohamed Rafi.