Elephants at sanctuary locations in Thailand

16 sanctuary locations has kept elephants in Thailand
There is presently 134 (16,81) living elephants in sanctuary locations in Thailand (in this database)

Region: Thailand is in this database included in asiaOther regions
Wild elephants:

Thailand has about 1600 (min. NA, max. 2000) wild elephants. Source:Sompoad Srikosamatara, (2010)

Location holdings:

16 sanctuary locations has kept 155 elephants in Thailand

(Database tables with collection of elephants further down on the page)

Elephants in sanctuary locations134 (16,81) living21 (2,17) dead
Sex ratio and
Management:
 Male  16 / 134 
 12%
 Female  81 / 134 
 60%
 Free contact  113 / 134 
 84%
 Protected contact  0 / 134  0%
 No contact  0 / 134  0%
 Unknown contact  2 / 134 
 1%
 wild  17 / 134 
 13%


Phu is a Karen word for a male elephant.

"Chang Pang" is a female elephant without tusks. There are females with a bit of tusks called "Khanai".

"Chang Plai" is a male elephant with tusks.

Chang Mae is the Thai word for mother and is added to the name after her first child is born.

Wild elephants


1996: 1 200-1 500 (Santiapillai, IUCN1996).
2002: 1000 elephants Lohanan (2002)
2010: 1600 Sompoad Srikosamatara, 2010

53 elephants were known to have been killed in Thailand in the wild from 1992 to 1997, 24 for their tusks.

captive population


In 1884, the north of Thailand alone had more than 20,000 captive elephants.

1965: the Department of Livestock Development reported that there were only 11,192 captive elephants.

1959-1969: 1138 elephants were legally exported (Storer 1981)

1979: Two female elephants (2 and ~ years old) were exported by the Dusit Zoo, Bangkok, to the Irish capitals Royal Zoological Society, in trade for 2 giraffes on 3 July, 1979. (Storer 1981)

1985: Later, in 1985, the number decreased to only 3,381.

1989: teak logging operations became banned, and some 2 000 elephants and owners became unemployed, in about the same time when tourism reached very high numbers, and those elephants became transferred into tourism activities in more than 100 camps and "elephant villages" (Baan Chaang).

1997: 2,180 left (Puttipong Khawnual 2005)

2012: 26 elephants without registration papers were confiscated and impounded at the Thai Elephant Conservation Center (TECC). At the March 13th National Elephant Day symposium in Bangkok, the DNP Chief estimated that 10% of the captive elephants in Thailand are not registered.

2014: a total of 4,435 elephants had the owner record. For the past 6 years, the birth rate (62.67±10.69) was higher than the dead rate (23.83±8.01) (p<0.0001). (Weerasak Pintawongs)

A typical elephant is valued at 400,000 baht ($1,200) and a baby (under 5 years) may cost upto 1 million baht (2010)

Export of elephants


1965: 76, 1966: 74, 1967: 77, 1968: 49, 1969: 52, 1970: 88, 1971: 84, 1972: 113, 1973: 43, 1974: 22, 1975: 12, 1976: 4 (Source: Department of Livestock Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, (Anon, 1994d) and earlier years of the same annual publication. via Lair, Richard, FAO: http://www.fao.org/3/ac774e/ac774e0h.htm)

According to CITES trade database, exports 1980-2020: 1980: 1 (USA), 1981: 3 (USA+Soviet Union), 1982: 2 (Japan), 1986: 2 (India), 1987: 2 (Germany+Japan), 1988: 4 (Japan), 1989: 3 (Japan), 1990: 2 (Hong Kong), 1991: 2 (Hong Kong), 1993: 2 (Japan), 1994: 3 (Japan+USA), 1995: 9 (China+Israel+Japan+Myanmar+USA), 1996: 22 (China+Japan+Myanmar), 1997: 17 (India+Israel+Japan+Myanmar), 1998: 10 (China+Japan), 1999: 10 (Canada+China+Japan+S. Korea), 2000: 17 (China+Japan+Sri Lanka), 2001: 14 (Denmark+Sri Lanka+S. Korea; 9 elephants to Korea origin from Laos) 2002: 19 (Japan+Philippines), 2003: 15 (Japan+Myanmar), 2004: 26 (China+Japan+Myanmar+Sweden), 2005: 12 (China+Japan), 2006: 20 (Australia+China+Germany+Japan), 2008: 3 (S. Korea, origin from Laos), 2009: 4 (Canada+Japan), 2012: 3 (S. Korea), 2013: 3 (S. Korea), 2015: 1 (Japan, origin from Laos)
(Source: CITES trade database)


Recommended Citation

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

Sources, among others


Internal relevant links

  • The elephant database startpage. Statistics
  • News about elephants in Thailand (From the sister site Elephant News)

  • NameElephant collectionTypePlaceDistrictProvinceStateRegion
    Baan Mama
    Kept totally 5 elephants
    , 5 present (2,3) 1 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuaryKanchanaburi
    (map)
    Mueang Kanchanaburi DistrictKanchanaburi Provincewestern Thailand
    BEES (Burm and Emilys Elephant Sanctuary)
    Kept totally 6 elephants
    , 2 present (0,2) 0 births1 relocated3 deathssanctuaryChiang Mai
    Born Free Elephant Sanctuary
    Kept totally 0 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuaryChiang MaiNorthern Thailand
    Chiang Mai Elephant Rescue Park
    Kept totally 5 elephants
    , 4 present (1,2) 0 births1 relocated0 deathssanctuaryChiang Mai
    Elephant Island
    Kept totally 2 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births1 relocated1 deathssanctuaryLamplaima, Isan
    Elephant Valley Thailand
    Kept totally 6 elephants
    , 5 present (1,4) 0 births1 relocated0 deathssanctuaryChiang raiChiang Rai Province
    Kanchanaburi Elephants World
    Kept totally 33 elephants
    , 28 present (4,24) 1 births1 relocated4 deathssanctuaryKanchanaburi
    (map)
    Kanchanaburi Province
    Khao Prathap Chang Open Safari and Wildlife Breeding Research Station (สวนสัตว์เปิด สถานีวิจัยกา
    Kept totally 0 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuaryTambon Pak ChongChom Bung district
    Koh Lanta Following Giants
    Kept totally 0 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuaryTambon Ko Lanta Yai
    (map)
    Ko Lanta DistrictKrabi
    Krabi Elephant Sanctuary
    Kept totally 3 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births3 relocated0 deathssanctuaryKrabi
    (map)
    Krabi ProvinceSouthern Thailand
    Pang La elephant sanctuary
    Kept totally 32 elephants
    , 32 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuaryLampang
    (map)
    Ngao DistrictLampang ProvinceNorthern Thailand
    Phuket Elephant Sanctuary (Montri Todtane)
    Kept totally 14 elephants
    , 10 present (0,9) 0 births1 relocated3 deathssanctuaryPhuketPhuket
    Samui Elephant Haven
    Kept totally 0 elephants
    , 0 present (0,0) 0 births0 relocated0 deathssanctuary
    Samui Elephant Sanctuary
    Kept totally 12 elephants
    , 11 present (0,10) 0 births0 relocated1 deathssanctuarySurat Thani
    (map)
    Ko Samui DistrictSurat Thani ProvinceSouthern Thailand
    Sublanka Wildlife Sanctuary
    Kept totally 25 elephants
    , 19 present (7,11) 1 births4 relocated2 deathssanctuaryLopburi
    WFFT wildlife rescue center and Elephant refuge
    Kept totally 28 elephants
    , 18 present (1,16) 0 births3 relocated7 deathssanctuaryPhetchaburi ProvincePetchaburi



    This document was updated: 2020-10-27 06:15:38



    Elephant Encyclopedia and database
    ELEPHANT
    ENCYCLOPEDIA

    Established 1995
    ELEPHANT
    DATABASE
    Established 2006
    Your ip: 3.236.218.88