Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) at
Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo) in Sri Lanka

dead elephant ☨ ♂ Raja  dead elephant



Species:Asian elephant (Elephas maximus)
Sex and age:Male ♂, unknown age

People killed:2: 1996: Piyadase
Born:* 1976 wild
Birth place:
Death reason: unknown:
Locations - owners
Present / last location:Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo), in Sri Lanka

Date of arrival

Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo)
Record history
History of updates2022-09-27

Latest document update2020-10-18 06:25:24
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† Raja is a dead Male ♂ Asian elephant (Elephas maximus), , who died at Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo), in Sri Lanka, .


Raja was born wild 1976.

Comments / pictures

1996: killed the Mahout Piyadasa; Reports of the incident said that Raja and the other zoo elephants were being lined up to go to the arena when the incident happened. As usual the mahouts were giving certain commands to exercise the animals before the performance. When Raja disobeyed an "up" command by Piyadasa , the Mahout persisted. Raja lunged towards the man and struck him with his "Milk teeth" (two eight inch Teeth under his trunk). The blow sent Piyadasa reeling against a wall and Raja lunged again, his Trunk raised. The Mahout died on the way to hospital.

1997-12-25: Raja, elephant at National Zoological Gardens who killed his trainer 18 months before, kills another trainer by grabbing with his Trunk and goring with his tusk. (Associated Press)

In January 1998, Raja was put up for public auction after being labeled a "killer." On Christmas Day 1997, he grabbed a keeper and gored him with a small tusk. Eighteen months prior, as part of the five elephant performance he grabbed and smashed another trainer into an electric pole, killing him. The zoo director declined to put down the animal due to the predominantly Buddhist country.

Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2024). Raja, Asian elephant (Elephas maximus) located at Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo) in Sri Lanka. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 17 April 2024 at https://www.elephant.se/database2.php?elephant_id=1987. (archived at the Wayback machine)

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Categories1976 births | Elephants from Sri Lanka National Zoological Gardens (Dehiwela Zoo) | Sri Lanka | Mankillers | Asian elephants

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