World’s loneliest elephant gets a second chance at life

Posted by Imogen Searra on 4 December 2020

Kaavan the elephant, also known as the ‘world’s loneliest’ elephant, has been given a new chance at life. The pachyderm has been relocated to a sanctuary in Cambodia after spending 8 years alone.

The male Asian elephant (36) was given to Pakistan’s Marghazar Zoo as a gift from Sri Lanka when he was 1-year-old.

He resided in a small enclosure with very little to keep himself entertained and stimulated. His mate, Saheli, who was also at the zoo died in 2012 and he has been alone since.

Finally, Kaavan is going to live the life any animal deserves.

‘We can now officially call him the “former loneliest elephant in the world”! Seeing Kaavan interacting with other elephants is a huge moment for us but more importantly for Kaavan. This is his first contact with an elephant in eight years. The whole Four Paws team is extremely moved and we could not be prouder”,’ said Four Paws International in a statement.

World's loneliest elephant gets a second chance at life

Kaavan interacting with another elephant for the first time in 8 years.

‘Due to the extremely poor healthcare and inexperienced staff at the Marghazar Zoo, in Islamabad, for years many of these animals have suffered terribly. For the past four years, we have observed the Marghazar Zoo in Pakistan, and have reached out to help the animals before, but until now our offers and recommendations were consistently ignored, resulting in further neglect of its animals and leaving many to unnecessary suffer and die.

‘However, recently hope has come at last in a decision made by the Islamabad High Court, for the immediate closure of the area and approval for the relocation of all the animals. This step comes at a great milestone for animal welfare in Pakistan, not only for the fate of the animals who have suffered in Marghazar Zoo but also because it will open doors for the promotion of more policies supporting animals in the future,’ said the animal welfare group.

‘Kaavan quickly gained confidence in us and made great progress in a short time. In his case it not only took a village but a whole country to transfer Kaavan to Cambodia. Without the support of the Islamabad Wildlife Management Board, the Pakistani authorities and the local community, American businessman Eric S. Margolis as well as our partners from Free The Wild, this relocation would have not been possible,’ said  Dr Amir Khalil, Four Paws veterinarian and head of the complex rescue mission.

Picture: Four Paws International


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