Hanging Out With Elephants
A couple of days ago we spent the day at Patara Elephant Farm where we
got to be "mahouts" (elephant owners) for the day. Patara adopts
healthy elephants from owners who don't wan them anymore and attempts
to breed them to maintain Thailand's elephant population, which has
been cut in half over the last 40 years.
It was SO fun and amazing. We learned how to tell if an elephant is
happy and healthy, how to clean them, what and when they like to eat,
and all about the current issues facing the domestic Asian elephant
population in Thailand. We also learned about Thailand's
reforestation plan and the process of reintroducing the elephant back
into the wild.
Hillary's elephant was Nui. Nui came to Patara from the circus and
was very smart and understood a lot of commands compared to some of
the other elephants. Also, she was very happy and cute. At first we
were a little timid around the elephants but it didn't take long to
get comfortable. We rode them (bareback style) to a waterfall for
lunch where they relaxed and played in the water.