Elephant locations in Sri Lanka

90 locations has kept elephants in Sri Lanka

There is presently 286 (124,115) living elephants in locations in Sri Lanka in this database

Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka is in this database included in asia
Wild elephants: Sri Lanka has about ca 7,500wild elephants. Source:https://news.mongabay.com/2020/07/photosin-search-of-sri-lankas-vanishing-tuskers/
Location holdings: 90 locations has kept 386 elephants in Sri Lanka

(Database tables with collection of elephants further down on the page)
Elephants in locations286 (124,115) living 100 (52,24) dead

Sri Lanka is an island with a land area of approximately 62,000 km2 situated in the Indian Ocean, 35 km from the southern end of the Indian Peninsula.

2004: In 2004 a rare albino elephant was spotted roaming Sri Lankas Ruhunu National Park, the first recorded sighting in the country.

2011: The first-ever nationwide elephant census in August 2011 produced a total of 7,379 jumbos across the island: 5,879 of them were spotted near parks and sanctuaries, while another 1,500 were estimated to be living in other areas. (Earlier 2 000-3 000, Santiapillai, IUCN1996, Sukumar 2008)

2021: Sri Lanka is home to an estimated 7,500 elephants, which is about 10% of elephants that live in Asia. They live on about 2% of the country’s land area, and a little more than 7% of male elephants bear tusks.

Poaching


A record number of elephants - 361 - have died in Sri Lanka during 2019, environmental groups say.

It is highest figure of elephant deaths to be reported since Sri Lanka became independent in 1948, conservationists said. Most were killed by people.

There are an estimated 7,500 wild elephants in Sri Lanka. Killing them is illegal, but the animals often come into conflict with rural communities.

Sajeewa Chamikara, an environmentalist from the Movement for Land and Agricultural Reform, told the BBC that some 85% of elephant deaths last year may have been caused by human activity.(Sri Lanka elephants: "Record number" of deaths in 2019, BBC)

Human-elephant conflict


2019: In 2019 alone, 407 elephants and 122 humans were killed due to the country’s worsening HEC. Man-elephant conflicts are the major cause for the elephant killings whilst a number of elephants were run over by trains accidentally. In some other cases elephants were killed as they fell in man-made structures like farming wells.

Research has indicated that problem-elephant translocation causes intensification and broader propagation of HEC and increased elephant mortality, hence defeats both HEC mitigation and elephant conservation goals.

Captive elephants


1946: In 1946 Sri Lanka was said to have 736 elephants in captivity (Santiapillai and de Silva, 1994)

1955: there were said to still be 670 elephants (Deraniyagala, 1955).

1967: census conducted by the University of Peradeniya and the Smithsonian Elephant Research Programme showed 532 elephants, with two owned by government and the remaining 530 in private hands (Jayasinghe and Jainudeen, 1970).

1982: In the early 1980s a census conducted by the DWLC listed 344 elephants, including 29 tuskers and 154 makhnas (Anon., 1982d); but A.B. Fernando, who handed the mimeographed single page to the author, estimated that about 10% were uncounted, the addition of which would give about 380 elephants (A.B. Fernando, 1988).

Recommended Citation

Koehl, Dan, Facts about elephants in Sri Lanka. Elephant Encyclopedia, (2021) available online retrieved 2021-12-07 at https://www.elephant.se/country.php?name=Sri Lanka.
(archived at the Wayback machine)

Sources, among others


Internal relevant links



NameElephant collectionPlace
P.R. Karunarathna
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsHemmathagama
Aluthgama Kande Vihara
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsAluthgama
(map)Kalutara District Western Province
Anamaduwa Wev Pitiya
(camp) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsPuttalam
Anamaduwe Dhammadassi Thera
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
Anuradhapura forest
(wild) Kept totally 12 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 9 births12 relocated0 deaths
(map)
B. B. Yayasekhara
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsDompe
Bellanwila Rajamaha Viharaya temple
(temple) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 2 present (2,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsBoralesgamuwa
(map)
Bentota Tourist Complex elephant orphanage
(orphanage) Kept totally 7 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births7 relocated0 deathsBentota Southern province
Ceylon Department of Civil Engineering
(camp) Kept totally 6 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births2 relocated4 deathsKurunegala
Ceylon department of the commissioner of roads
(camp) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated2 deathsColombo
Ceylon Zoological Gardens Company
(zoo) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births3 relocated0 deathsDehivela, Colombo
(map)
Champis elephant safari
(camp) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKegalleKegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Colombo unspecified location
(private) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated2 deathsColombo
(map)
D. S. Senanayake
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deaths
D.A.W. Kannangara
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deaths
Delgamu temple
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsRatnapura
Deraniyagala Sri Saman Devalaya
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsDeraniyagala
Devinda Senanayake
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deaths Kerala
Devinuwara Upulwan Sri Vishnu Devalaya
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsMatara
Dutugemunu of Anuradhapura
(private) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated2 deathsAnuradhapura
Galgamuwa range forest
(wild) Kept totally 8 elephants
, 6 present (6,0) 1 births1 relocated1 deathsGalgamuwa
(map)Kurunegala District North Western Province
Gangaramaya Temple
(temple) Kept totally 4 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births1 relocated2 deathsColombo
Giritale Elephant Transit Home Medical Centre
(hospital) Kept totally 5 elephants
, 1 present (0,1) 0 births4 relocated0 deathsPolonnaruwa
H. L. Yajarathna
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deaths Ratnapura
Hambantota Wild Elephant Management Reserve
(wild) Kept totally 5 elephants
, 4 present (1,3) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsHambantota Southern Province
Horowpothana Elephant Holding Ground (HEHG)
(sanctuary) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsHorowpathana National Park
(map) North Central Province North eastern Sri Lanka
J.P.I. Piyadasa
(private) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
James Emerson Tennent
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsColombo
John Hagenbeck & Co.
(dealer) Kept totally 7 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births7 relocated0 deathsColombo
K.G. Punchi Apuhami
(private) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated3 deathsKegalla
K.G. Sumarasekere
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
Kaduwela Kotalawela Sankapitti Vihara
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKaduwela
Kalawewa National Park
(wild) Kept totally 8 elephants
, 6 present (5,0) 0 births1 relocated1 deathsAnuradhapura
(map)Anuradhapura District North Central Province
Kandalama Walauwa
(private) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births2 relocated0 deathsKandalama Mirigama, Western Sri Lanka
Kandy Sri Dalada Maligawa Temple of the Tooth
(temple) Kept totally 16 elephants
, 8 present (8,0) 0 births2 relocated6 deathsKandy
(map)
Kataragama Kiri Vehera Dewalaya
(temple) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 3 present (3,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKataragama
(map)
Kaudulla National Park
(wild) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 3 present (3,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsPolonnaruwa
(map) North Central province
Kelaniya Raja Maha Vihara temple
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (2,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKelaniya
Kotte Rajamaha Viahara
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsKotte
Kurunegala District
(wild) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKurunegala North Western Province
Kurunegala forest
(wild) Kept totally 5 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 1 births5 relocated0 deathsKurunegala
Lahugala Elephant Sanctuary
(wild) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsPolonnaruwa
Lucky Bandaranayake
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsPamunuwa, Mawanella
Lunugamvehera National park
(wild) Kept totally 7 elephants
, 5 present (4,1) 0 births2 relocated0 deathsLunugamvehera
Maduru Oya National Park
(wild) Kept totally 6 elephants
, 4 present (1,1) 1 births2 relocated0 deathsPolonnaruwa Uva Province
Maharagama Temple
(temple) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 3 present (0,1) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsMaharagama Western Province
Mahiyangana Raja Maha Viharaya
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsMahayangana
Matara elephant stables
(dealer) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsMatara
Matara Weherahena temple
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (1,1) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsMatara
(map)
Millennium Elephant Foundation
(private) Kept totally 13 elephants
, 9 present (4,5) 0 births2 relocated2 deathsKegalle
(map)Kegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Minneriya national park
(wild) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 3 present (0,1) 3 births0 relocated0 deathsPolonnaruwa
(map) North Central Province
Molagoda elephant village camp
(camp) Kept totally 10 elephants
, 5 present (2,3) 0 births1 relocated4 deathsMolagoda
(map)
Morahena Watte
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsAthurugiriya
Morawatte Temple
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsKegalleKegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Muthiyangana Raja Maha Vihara
(temple) Kept totally 4 elephants
, 2 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated1 deathsBadulla
(map)
Nawagaththegama jungle
(wild) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 1 births1 relocated0 deathsPuttalam
Nawala businessman
(zoo) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsNawala, Kotte Western Province
Olaboduwe Ralahami
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deaths
P.W.Wijegunawardene
(private) Kept totally 4 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births4 relocated0 deaths
Panagoda army camp
(private) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births3 relocated0 deathsKalutara
Panamure elephant kraal
(dealer) Kept totally 30 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births17 relocated13 deathsSabaragamuwa
(map)
Pelmadulla Purana Rajamaha Viharaya
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsPelmadulla
Pinnawala elephant orphanage
(orphanage) Kept totally 150 elephants
, 72 present (23,37) 69 births55 relocated23 deathsKegalle
(map)Kegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Pinnawala elephant safari
(camp) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 1 present (0,1) 0 births1 relocated1 deathsKegalle
(map)Kegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Pinnawala Zoo
(zoo) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (2,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKegalle
(map)Kegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Polwatte temple
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 1 present (1,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsKollupitiya
Port of Colombo
(seaport) Kept totally 38 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births38 relocated0 deathsColombo
(map)
Pradeep Nilanga Dela Bandara
(private) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKandy
Ragama temple (unknown name)
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated1 deathsRagama
Ridi Vihara (Silver temple)
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (0,1) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsKandy
Ridiyagama Safari park
(zoo) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (2,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsAmbalanthota
(map) Hambantota
Ritigala Yaan Oya Elephant Transit Home
(orphanage) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsRitigala Strict Nature Reserve
Samaragiri Club Concept Elephant Bath
(camp) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 1 births2 relocated0 deathsKegalleKegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Sinharaja Forest Reserve
(wild) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (2,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
(map) Southern Province
Siri Alanmathiniyaramaya Purana Viharaya
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (0,2) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsColombo
Sri Dewram Wehera Depanama Pannipitiya
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 1 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths Pannipitiya
Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo)
(zoo) Kept totally 67 elephants
, 7 present (1,5) 1 births52 relocated8 deathsDehiwala, Colombo
(map)
Sri Lanka Ramanya Nikaya
(temple) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsWeveldeniya
Sri Lanka unspecified location
(wild) Kept totally 52 elephants
, 2 present (1,0) 116 births46 relocated4 deaths
(map)
Sumedha Basnayake
(private) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsBalangoda
Tikiri Bandara Mampitiya
(private) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births2 relocated0 deathsGiragama Walauwa, Yatinuwara
Uda Walawe Elephant Transit Home
(orphanage) Kept totally 95 elephants
, 22 present (10,9) 0 births68 relocated5 deathsUda Walawe National Park
(map)
Uda Walawe Nationalpark
(wild) Kept totally 73 elephants
, 68 present (21,33) 6 births4 relocated1 deathsUda Walawe National Park
(map)
Udugama Plywood Corporation
(camp) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathsUdugama Central Province
Ulankulama interim elephant orphanage
(orphanage) Kept totally 0 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths North Central Province
Vipashyarama Purana Vihara
(temple) Kept totally 2 elephants
, 2 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
Wewaladeniya Rajamaha Viharaya
(temple) Kept totally 1 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated0 deathsKegalleKegalle District Sabaragamuwa Province
Wilpattu elephant orphanage
(orphanage) Kept totally 6 elephants
, 0 present (0,0) 0 births6 relocated0 deathsWilpattu national park
Wilpattu Nationalpark
(wild) Kept totally 3 elephants
, 3 present (2,1) 0 births0 relocated0 deaths
(map)
Yala Ruhunu National Park
(wild) Kept totally 25 elephants
, 18 present (9,9) 21 births2 relocated5 deathsHambantota
(map)



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