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Letter to the editor – Concern for the elephants in Samui Na Muang Park

I am writing this letter hoping from my heart you or someone you know can help the elephants captured in the Koh Samui Na Muang park. I have already sent an email to the Tourism Center,but I am not sure if they will take an action.  My English is not the best, I apologize for my mistakes in advance.

elephantsWe were visiting Thailand  in the last two weeks and I must say I and everyone else in the group were truly shocked by the two elephants kept in the Na Muang park, especially when we saw the little one tied to a ca 1m chain to the ground which prevented him from moving around even the smallest bit, so tourists can have a near look at him and maybe feed him. A lady was selling banana to the visitors next to him…He only moved his head left and right, because I guess this was the only thing he could do all day, standing and shaking his head, desperately. He also did not have any water nearby. I must admit that my eyes were filled with tears after I learned these animals were held captive like this for money.

I attached some pictures of this abuse, please take a look to see the poor creature on the short chain. The big elephant was used for trekking, the man sitting on his neck was constantly hitting him on the head with a wooden stick in order to stir him…(unfortunately, I could not make a photo of that).

I cannot see the point in keeping them in this park under these conditions. I understand one could argue that people pay money to see some elephants and this money supports them and the employees of this park, but I am sure that every tourist would leave that place with a much content feeling if they saw the animals under better circumstances, maybe even happy, moving around in a bigger area in the woods. Providing the little elephant more space and treating the bigger one with more respect during the trekking could also bring you some benefits. Here they are:

PROs of granting the elephants a better life:

  • happier animals- although I am not a fan of ZOOs, but even they ensure a better life than the park in Koh Samui at the moment

  • More satisfied tourists: no visitor wants to see that his money is supporting animal cruelty. They want to see happiness, have a good time and not a bad conscience. Who could be happy to see the little elephant tied to that short chain? No human or animal deserves a life like this.

  • More satisfied visitors lure more visitors: On the internet there are planty of websides (e.g. Tripadvisor), where people give feedback and evaluate their experience. If they are satisfied with what they saw, they will let other people know that the place is worth a visit!

  • PR, marketing, Advertisement: the Park or the Island could make a PR move from changing the circumstances in the park, write some articles about how animal friendly Koh Samui and Na Muang is, how you make a difference!!! You could include this in the flyers promoting the day tours as well! Maybe you could install some donation boxes in the park for supporting the animals as well (but only if the money is used for the right cause)

  • Religion: Buddhism is an animal friendly religion, I am sure most of the people would appreciate if this aspect of the religion would be present in the park as well…

Please help these animals or write me whom  I should contact in order to achieve the change!! Thank you for reading this, I appreciate that you took some time for my letter, I am really hoping to hear from you soon!

Best regards,

Anna Goghova

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