This majestic bull in his sixties came to BLES in December 2015 along with three other bulls who were living locally in our community. Although he was once used for dragging heavy logs out of the forest, Nwon grew tired of work and began lashing out against the people and elephants around him. This behaviour left him isolated and unwanted, deemed “too aggressive” to approach.
While the team at BLES wants to ensure the safety of all people and elephants at the sanctuary, we also believe it is important to offer care to elephants with a reputation like this, because if Nwon did not find a forever home at BLES, where would he live?
It is important to highlight that our elephants do not exist for human observation and entertainment.Each elephant at BLES has the freedom to choose. Choice is something they have always been denied. At BLES, each elephant is an individual and each rescue has the space and all the time he or she needs to recover from the trauma of that previous existence and truly begin to live as a real elephant. If an elephant is happier and calmer deep in the forest, away from the stress and overstimulation of people and other elephants, then we are able to offer that. Each animal’s definition of “sanctuary” is different, and we feel BLES is unique in its determination to listen to what an elephant wants and needs before deciding on his or her behalf.
Nwon was sold without our knowledge to a dealer in Surin in September 2016 for a large sum of money. A strong young bull like him would fetch a good price, and his owner could not resist the offer made.
We were shocked and deeply disappointed by this betrayal, and our supporters shared that anger - they demanded that we go and get him back, so we contacted the new owner, who obviously wanted to make some profit on his recent purchase, and we negotiated a good price, under the circumstances.
A fundraiser was launched, and in no time, we had raised the money. We are profoundly grateful to each and everyone who donated to his rescue - our supporters would not rest until they knew his future was safe once more.
Thank you to BLEAF ( Boon Lotts Elephants Asia Foundation ) for helping us raise the funds for his rescue.
Nwon returned to BLES 21st October and wasted no time getting back to his sweethearts Pang Noi and Pang Suai, who happily shared his enormous fruit freedom feast and then went for a long walk in the forest together. Bliss.