A heart-wrenching video of an injured elephant in in agonizing pain in Sri Lanka recently emerged on social media. The male elephant reportedly collapsed in a puddle of mud near a jungle and was unable to get up.
In the touching footage, rescuers from Kottukachchiya in Sri Lanka are seen comforting the hurt elephant as it lays in the mud. Locals who responded to save the poor animal reportedly discovered that a nail was hammered on one of its legs, according to the Daily Mail.
Concerned villagers tried to ease the elephant’s condition by offering it some fruits to eat. Others cleaned its wounds by washing it with saline water.
It was not reported if poachers had caused the injury to the animal which is typically hunted down in the country for its valuable ivory tusks.
“The tusker’s health condition is serious but we are doing everything to save him,” local physician Dr. Isuru Hewa Kottage was quoted as saying. “We are giving him medicines and saline water. The wound is deep.”
The Sri Lankan elephant is a subspecies of the Asian elephant listed by IUCN as endangered. The population of the elephants has reportedly declined by at least 50% over the last three generations (60–75 years). Threats to the species include habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentatio,n among others.