Addressing a Paradoxical Reality
For millennia, the people of Sri Lanka have maintained a sacred fellowship with Asian elephants. Elephants are an important part of the country's culture, traditions, ecology, and economy.
Yet there is a paradoxical reality behind this long-standing relationship. Captive elephants—including many taken from the wild—are forced into a lifetime of chained servitude often characterized by chronic pain, isolation, and suffering.
An estimated 250 Asian elephants, used primarily in the tourist industry and for religious ceremony and personal prestige, live in captivity in Sri Lanka. Many receive no professional veterinary care.
Lack of adequate veterinary care often leads to chronic disorders: irreversible joint damage, painful foot abnormalities, parasitic disease, intestinal illness, dehydration, infections and abscesses, and stereotypical behaviors—common symptoms of neglect of the most basic biological, emotional, and physical needs of elephants.
Project EleVETS is an innovative, new project of the Sri Lanka Elephant & Leopard Conservation Project, which is currently being developed in partnership with the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science at the University of Peradeniya and with top elephant veterinarians from Sri Lanka and around the globe.
The EleVETS project will allow our team of elephant experts to work hand-in-hand with Sri Lanka’s practicing veterinarians and elephant owners to bring about sustainable improvements in the health, care, and management of captive elephants and lay essential groundwork for the development of New Life Elephant Sanctuary, Sri Lanka’s first sanctuary for captive elephants.
There is an unofficial motto: “Never let an opportunity go by that could make a difference.” With more than 20 years of grassroots success in Sri Lanka, the Elephant & Leopard Conservation Project is ideally positioned to utilize its longstanding relationships and good will to lead EleVETS to success...making a lasting difference that will help elephants today and tomorrow.
Find out more about Frontier's Elephant & Leopard Conservation Project in Sri Lanka
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