2 rare elephants found dead in Indonesian jungle

May 08, 2009
In this photo taken on May 7, 2009, conservationists and officials inspect the carcass of an elephant believed to have been poisoned near Pekanbaru, Riau province, Sumatra island. Two Sumatran elephants believed to have been poisoned by poachers were found dead in the jungle of northwest Indonesia with their tusks removed, a conservationist said.(AP Photo)

(AP) -- Two rare Sumatran elephants believed to have been poisoned with cyanide-laced pineapples were found dead in the jungles of northwestern Indonesia with their tusks removed, a conservationist said.

The giant males aged 16 and 23 were discovered Thursday near Pekanbaru, Sumatra, about 560 miles (900 kilometers) from the capital, Jakarta, said Muslino, a spokesman for the Conservation and Natural Resources Agency. Like many Indonesians, he uses just one name.

Four pineapples spiked with cyanide were scattered on the ground near the carcasses and two sets of bloodied tusks had been hidden in the underbrush, said Muslino.

Police were searching for poachers believed responsible, he said.

Indonesia's endangered elephants, tigers, and orangutans are increasingly threatened by shrinking jungle habitat, which is cut and burned to make way for plantations or sold as lumber.

Just 3,000 Sumatran are believed to still be living in their natural surroundings.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: Orchid named after UC Riverside researcher

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Sumatran Rhino Seen in Borneo Jungles

Sep 09, 2006

(AP) -- Wildlife rangers have made the first-ever sighting of a Sumatran rhino deep in the jungles of Borneo, taking video and photos of a single male after a decade-long search, conservationists said Friday.

Fewer elephants with tusks born in China

Jul 18, 2005

More of China's male elephants reportedly are being born without tusks because hunting of the animals for their ivory is affecting the gene pool.

Male elephants get 'photo IDs' from scientists

Aug 15, 2007

Asian elephants don’t carry photo identification, so scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society and India’s Nature Conservation Foundation are providing the service free of charge by creating a photographic archive ...

Palm oil putting orangutans at risk

Oct 22, 2007

Conservationists meeting at the Brookfield Zoo near Chicago say growing demand for palm oil is putting Sumatran orangutans at risk of extinction.

Lost cuckoo breaks its silence

Feb 26, 2007

A team of biologists with the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) have recorded for the first time the call of the extremely rare Sumatran ground cuckoo, found only on the island of Sumatra in Indonesia.

Recommended for you

Orchid named after UC Riverside researcher

13 hours ago

One day about eight years ago, Katia Silvera, a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California, Riverside, and her father were on a field trip in a mountainous area in central Panama when they stumbled ...

In sex-reversed cave insects, females have the penises

15 hours ago

Researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on April 17 have discovered little-known cave insects with rather novel sex lives. The Brazilian insects, which represent four distinct but re ...

Fear of the cuckoo mafia

15 hours ago

If a restaurant owner fails to pay the protection money demanded of him, he can expect his premises to be trashed. Warnings like these are seldom required, however, as fear of the consequences is enough to ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

docknowledge
not rated yet May 08, 2009
Welcome, society, to one of the most unpleasant of choices. A starving man says "What's more important, an elephant on the verge of exctinction, or the life of my family?"

And the answer is: the elephant.

How many of us could make the call? Hard times are coming.

More news stories

Deadly human pathogen Cryptococcus fully sequenced

Within each strand of DNA lies the blueprint for building an organism, along with the keys to its evolution and survival. These genetic instructions can give valuable insight into why pathogens like Cryptococcus ne ...

Biologists help solve fungi mysteries

(Phys.org) —A new genetic analysis revealing the previously unknown biodiversity and distribution of thousands of fungi in North America might also reveal a previously underappreciated contributor to climate ...

Better thermal-imaging lens from waste sulfur

Sulfur left over from refining fossil fuels can be transformed into cheap, lightweight, plastic lenses for infrared devices, including night-vision goggles, a University of Arizona-led international team ...

Hackathon team's GoogolPlex gives Siri extra powers

(Phys.org) —Four freshmen at the University of Pennsylvania have taken Apple's personal assistant Siri to behave as a graduate-level executive assistant which, when asked, is capable of adjusting the temperature ...