Elephant found dead headless, ivory disappears

EoF News / 20 September 2006

Pekanbaru (EoF News) -- An elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus) was found dead where its skeletons and ivory vanished as a villager said it was poisoned by ivory poachers. The elephant’s ripen carcass was found by residents of Dusun Tasik Indah, Segati village of Pelalawan, 180 km away from Pekanbaru, last weekend. The villagers informed the provincial conservation agency (BKSDA) this week, Antara news agency reported Tuesday.
The location where the elephant’s carcass found around 200 meters away from road built by PT Riau Andalan Pulp & Paper (RAPP belonging to APRIL) inside logging concession of PT Siak Raya Timber, in the proposed extension of Tesso Nilo National Park.
It is located nearby village and border to oil palm plantation where debris of forest fires The carcass found without any skeletons but torn skin and the 30-cm diameter feet. The news agency reported that residents refused to comment on the killing. A prominent indigenous Petalangan leader, Hamzah, told that he found the animal dead last week. “I found a handful of rice mixed with cement and soap filled with potassium poison,” tearful Hamzah told Antara. The poison was prepared for the cluster of elephant that usually pass the location.
Despite he recognized the perpetrators of the killing, Hamzah could not do anything. Villagers said three elephants were killed in the area, but he only found one.
Nukman, head of Riau conservation agency (BKSDA) for region I, said the elephant found inside concession of PT Nusawana Raya, subsidiary of PT Siak Raya Timber.
He said the dead elephant has range of Rantau Kasih-Bakung-Segati-Langgam. Its cluster in northern Tesso Nilo usually comprise 30-40 elephants.
Massive deforestation in Riau natural forest has been threatening population of Sumatran elephants.