The 5th national elephant day was celebrated at the Maesa
Elephant Camp in Mae Rim district, Chiang Mai. The event is to remember the
significance of the elephant, Thailand’s sacred animal, which has played
such an important role in Thailand’s culture and tradition.
Thailand’s elephants have been working elephants for
centuries, being used during war, transporting goods, logging in the
teak-forests and other tasks suitable for their intelligence and strength.
It is no coincidence that the elephant symbol is used in the Royal
The elephant numbers are dwindling with now no more than
3000 animals still living in Thailand, half of them domesticated and the
other half living a ‘wild life’ in the National Parks.
The venue was the Maesa Elephant nursery and should there
have been anyone who was not yet in love with the huge gray creatures, he
definitely was before the afternoon was over.
Governor of Chiang Mai, Suwat Tantipat presided on the
day. He gave a very earnest speech regarding the elephant protection plan,
which is currently underway in Thailand as well as reminding the older
generation to plant the love for elephants in the hearts of the youth of
Thailand, as their elders did for them. A traditional blessing ceremony took
place and Dr. Jao Duan Dueng na Chiang Mai thanked everybody who is helping
save the endangered species, a huge part of Thai heritage.
Choochat Galmapijit, owner of Maesa Elephant Camp
informed those present that the project of implanting frozen semen in a
female elephant was hopefully successful. At the end of March, ‘Pang
Chang’ the female elephant will have an ultrasound and if she is pregnant
and can come to full term, this will be the first elephant baby, born
following artificial insemination.
Since it was ‘their’ day, the elephants were treated
to a feast in their honour. It was pure joy to watch large, small, old and
young elephants, with their mahouts, walk majestically down from the
mountain to take their place at the banquet table, to enjoy the bamboo
shoots, grass and fruits set up in the grounds of the Maesa Nursery.
When the elephantine hunger was satisfied the spectators were treated to
a painting exhibition which left more than one person wishing they could be
as artistic as the painting pachyderms. Then the Thai Elephant Orchestra
with the world’s finest animal harmonica players marched in, joyfully
dancing around the grounds, before competing in the football match,
basketball and a ‘must’ for a Thai elephant - the exceptionally amusing
Muay Thai Boxing show.
good when a lovely girl scratches my left ear.
Mai Governor Suwat Tantipat and Dr. Jao Duan Dueng na Chiang Mai were happy
to receive the Thai national flag, presented by one of the toddlers.
honest, I deserve to have a meal, after such an exiting day.
is my favorite! OK, I agree that the points are a bit larger, but so am I,
compared to the average painter.
Mai Governor Suwat Tantipat, accompanied by such lovely girls.
Galmapijit, the owner of the Maesa Elephant Camp, during his opening
God it’s raining blossoms, and not elephants - the traditional Lanna
welcome dance was a delightful performance.
Duan Dueng na Chiang Mai signing the reception book, and extending her best
wishes for this 5th national elephant day.
proudly present - the national flag carrier.
told me to drink a lot of water when it’s hot - and it is hot today!
nice spread they have prepared for us today. Sugarcane, bananas, grass, just
about everything our big hearts desire.
left, right, center?
try this at home - feeding 60 elephants at the same time can be quite a
largest drum was beaten to welcome the guests
relation to us, the basketball basket is way too small...