Quang Nam province seeks solutions to preserve elephants hinh anh 1Illustrative image. (Photo: quangnam.gov.vn)

Quang Nam (VNA) – A workshop on the preservation of Asian elephants in Bac Tra My and Hiep Duc districts of Quang Nam province was held on May 19 in the central province.

The event, which was organised by the Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources under the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology in collaboration with the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, aims to find solutions to effectively conserve the elephant population in the locality.

It is reported that a herd of Asian elephants are living in forests belonging to Bac Tra My district, outside the elephant conservation area of the province. 

Although no exact information about the number of individuals and structure of the herd is available, it is urgent to evaluate their status, habit and food source, to help with the protection of the elephants or relocation of them to the conservation area.

Asian elephant has been on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List and the Vietnam Red Book. In Vietnam, elephants are distributed in a number of provinces including Son La, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Nam, Kon Tum, Dak Lak, Binh Thuan, and Dong Nai.

According to a report by the World Wide Fund for Nature in Vietnam (WWF-Vietnam), at least 29 elephants were killed or endangered from 2009-2015.  There are only about 100 individuals living in the wild in Vietnam due to loss of habitat and illegal hunting.

A project on the conservation of elephants for 2013-2030 has been approved by the Vietnamese Government to meet the urgent requirements to preserve elephants in the wild.

Addressing the workshop, Tran Ut, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development said a project on the establishment of elephant species and habitat conservation area in Nong Son district has been endorsed by the provincial People’s Committee in 2017, adding that elephants are found living only in Tien Phuoc, Bac Tra My, Nong Son, and Nam Giang and Phuoc Son districts.

According to a report of the biodiversity evaluation programme released in April, 2020, a herd of eight Asian elephants has been found living in an elephant conservation area in Nong Son district. They include a mature male, one semi-mature male, three mature females and two semi-mature females, and a one-year-old calf.

At the workshop, experts and researchers focused on assessing the current status and possibility of relocating the Asian elephant herd from Bac Tra My and Hiep Duc districts to the conservation area to ensure the development of the herd./.