Our most recently rescued sweet soul is doing great (If you haven’t already, watch our video for Boon Dee’s backstory: http://www.thaielephantrefuge.org/breaking-news-elephant-boon-dee-regains-her-freedom-video/)! On her first day after being freed of her chains, she was already walking around exploring her brand new home in Project 4. Grass, trees, lakes, no chains, no hooks, no screams, and nobody sitting on her back. Ever again. What a change! And even better, after a brief first contact with Ganda (her old friend), they were able to meet again a day later with Ganda’s best friend, Mee Chai.

A fun fact we already observed with this mini-herd is that elephants have one of the most efficient senses of smell in the animal kingdom. They have around 2000 genes for scent receptors, 5 times more than humans! The trunk is used in tactile communication, to touch and taste their friends and new elephants they meet. They place their trunks into each other’s mouths and often inspect the whole body with the trunk.

So we are witnessing really complex social interactions that go deeper than the obvious cute factor. What a privilege to be able to observe such a recovery of normal social behavior for animals who have been exploited, tortured, confined, and oppressed by humans for most of their lives. This is the magic of Project 4!

Hopefully this budding friendship will be confirmed in the coming weeks and we will be happy to announce that the ladies are forming a long-lasting herd.

Let’s continue fighting for an abuse-free life for Thailand’s captive elephants!