Conservation officials are delighted to have recorded the first known pair of elephant twins to have ever been born in Sri Lanka.
AFP reports: “The young tuskers — who rangers estimate are three to four weeks old — were spotted in the Minneriya sanctuary about 200 kilometres (125 miles) north-east of Colombo, grazing with a herd of about a dozen elephants. After observing the pair from a distance, officials are confident enough to ‘say they are twins,’ Department of Wildlife Conservation Director-General Tharaka Prasad told AFP. The two were also photographed feeding from the same cow on Monday by renowned conservationist Sumith Pilapitiy, who also told AFP he believed the two were twins.”
Sri Lankan elephants are endangered with numbers estimated at 2,500-4,000.
The WWF reports: “The herd size in Sri Lanka ranges from 12-20 individuals or more. It is led by the oldest female, or matriarch. In Sri Lanka, herds have been reported to contain nursing units, consisting of lactating females and their young, and juvenile care units, containing females with juveniles. The Sri Lankan elephant population has fallen almost 65% since the turn of the 19th century. Today, the Sri Lanka elephant is protected under the Sri Lankan law and killing one carries the death penalty.”