Elephant calf dead, mother jumbo mourns at site

Dhenkanal: A three-year old baby elephant was found dead in Dhenkanal district on Sunday.

The carcass was located on the Canal Road near Mahapada village under Joranda section of Sarangi forest range of the district, Divisional Forest Officer Sunil Kumar Dalai said.

However, a herd of pachyderms, including the mother jumbo, stayed put near the carcass. Whoever ventured nearby, the mother chased them apparently to ward off any threat to its baby.

"The mother elephant was found to be deeply hurt over the death of the baby…It did not allow anyone to go nearby and chased away whoever approached the site," a villager said as hundreds thronged the site to catch the sight.

Though other elephants in the herd retreated into the jungle after a few hours, the mother stayed near the carcass till afternoon and intermittently chased away people who went nearby before finally deserting the carcass probably realising the calf will not come back to life, Dalai said.

A post-mortem was conducted on the body and reasons behind the death could be ascertained after the report was received.