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Lupita Nyong’O is now an ambassador for the organization WildAid which spreads awareness of poaching and wildlife crime, the Oscar winning actress now leads the fight against elephant poaching and ivory sales. Thousands of elephants are killed every year for their ivory tusks which are sent to China and the Far East to be sold for more than $2,000, Lupita said she was proud to be Kenyan and was honored to become a global ambassador for elephants!

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This is beautiful Wassana, a rescue elephant at Boon Lott’s Elephant Sanctuary (BLES) in Thailand.

Wassana was the victim of a land mine injury, with half her front foot blown off while her human owner forced her to work in illegal logging. When she could no longer carry logs, they put her to use for trekking/elephant rides with tourists on her back, where she had to climb up and down hills on that injured foot for years. Luckily, BLES founder Katherine Connor found help and funding through many charitable individual BLES supporters to buy Wassana from her greedy owner and rescue her from a continued life of misery and pain. 

Sadly, Wassana is one of the lucky ones. Read more about her emotional story here.

Above, Katherine Connor is cleaning Wassana’s injured foot - a daily ritual - before wrapping and putting on the protective boot made especially for this lovely, sweet lady ele who patiently stands there - in excruciating pain each time her injury is touched, no doubt - because she knows she’s being looked after. 

In spite of all that this beautiful elephant, and others like her all over the world suffer at human hands, elephants appear to have an incredible capacity to forgive and show love and loyalty to those who treat them with caring and kindness. And any donations made to BLES goes directly towards the care and rescuing of abused elephants.

As the saying goes, an elephant never forgets. 

Wildlife workers are testing out a “pink poison” that will make the ivory tusks and horns of elephants and rhinos unusable for human consumption. Recently ivory has been claimed to aid in the treatment of illnesses such as cancer but the pink dye induces side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea (ironic because these are exactly the symptoms ivory has been claimed to diminish). The dye is also detectable via airport scanning systems, which will potentially deter illegal ivory traders from attempting to transport ivory.

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Inside an Elephant Capture

If you cannot tolerate graphics videos of animals IN PAIN, please DO NOT watch!

The escalating conflict between man and elephant in Hassan, India left the authorities with no option but to order the capture of several elephants..

The procedure is traumatic  - for the officials, for the tame elephants, for the wild captive and even for the observer. The video above is a cull from over 20 hours of footage; it is very graphic in its detail  - but it is an integral part of knowing what happens in such a scenario. 

When we read of human-elephant conflict and of the lives lost and property damaged, we agree that “capture” is the most logical solution. But do we know what capturing a wild elephant actually means, what it looks like, what it feels like? 

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Follow veterinarians from Cameroon to China as they use groundbreaking human medical technology to help baby pandas, elephants and gorillas.

Don’t miss the series premiere of OPERATION WILD, tonight at 8/7c on PBS

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gudnight 🐘😴💤 (unmute this video right now!)