Earth & Conservation

In Myanmar, Thousands of Elephants Are Now Unemployed

Would these elephants be better off as work animals?

Myanmar is in the midst of a major democratic transition. One of the reforms that have recently been enacted is a ban on the export of raw timber. It's welcome news for conservationists, as the country was losing its forest at an alarming rate. For thousands of elephants though, it's a bit of a mixed blessing. While no longer forced to work, they could potentially wreak havoc in the wild or get hunted by poachers. This short video from the New York Times profiles Ko Sai, an elephant caretaker (known as a 'mahout') who has built strong bonds with these animals: