Phu Noy


There are so many things that make this a feel-good story. We have not had too much luck with the previous pregnancies. The last two were carried to full term, but because of complications, the calves did not make it. This is not abnormal, but it certainly is a blow to the would-be mother and our community. Even so, we never gave up and kept believing in our way of working, despite the extremely challenging times we have gone through this year with the COVID-19 pandemic. So, you can understand how happy we were when after only 30 minutess, we could meet our new, healthy calf on Xmas day! Female elephants Mae Khampheng and her friend Mae Thongbay have been through a lot together. They worked hard in logging camps, had to wait for customers in the burning sun when they were giving rides in the tourist town of Vang Vieng, and have lived in a tourist camp in Luang Prabang. At some stage in her life, Mae Khampheng also lost her ability to see from one eye. When we were able to buy them, they were in a sad state. Severely dehydrated and weakened by their communal suffering, we made sure they had all the time they needed to regain their strength. Because of all the hardship they had suffered together, they had formed a bond as you would see in a wild herd. Once we knew Mae Khampeng was expecting, we brought her and Mae Thongbay to the forest around Muang Phiang district. We hoped that this environment would reduce the stress during Mae Khampheng’s pregnancy and provide her with enough natural food to prepare her for the delivery. During their time in the forest together, it seemed like Mae Thongbay had gotten ten years younger. On the night of the 25th, our team was camping out at the site we had chosen for the delivery. Some flat rice paddies, right on the edge of the forest. We did not want to take any risks, a birth on the uneven terrain of the jungle could create some difficulties. Because of the strong bond between the two females and their experience as mothers, we had left them to roam free during the delivery. After 30 uneventful minutes, a new baby girl was born!

Distinguishing features: The youngest bull elephant at the ECC.

Personality traits: Still hard to say, as, at the time of writing this blog, Phu Noy is only a week old! More to come when his personality has developed!

  • Gender: Female
  • Year of birth: 2020
  • Arrived at the ECC: 2020
  • Weight (2020): 80 kg