Amanda's fight for sick elephant

Bona is being cared for by environmentalists who hope to raise enough money to provide one year's care for the orphaned elephant.
Bona is being cared for by environmentalists who hope to raise enough money to provide one year's care for the orphaned elephant. Contributed

DETAILS of the dramatic rescue of orphaned elephant Bona are emerging from Sumatra as a team of conservations led by Hervey Bay environmentalist Amanda French continue the battle to save the baby from malnourishment and sickness.

Rumours that shrouded the true story of how Bona came to be in captivity have been dispelled by members of the Conservation Response Unit in Sumatra, one of whom has corresponded with Team Bona.

According to details published on, the CRU found the baby elephant in a palm plantation, not a trap.

Seven dead elephants were later discovered near the plantation, believed to be the victims of a mass poisoning.

It is suspected that Bona's mother was among the dead.

Despite being an infant, it still took eight men to subdue Bona, load her onto a truck and transport her to an elephant camp.

She is now in residence there along with 19 other adult elephants.

The CRU conducts regular patrols in the jungle to control illegal logging, coal mining and poaching and has played a key role in Bona's survival.

Ms French, one of the organisers of the annual Paddle Out 4 Whales event, is now in Sumatra co-ordinating efforts.

A fundraising campaign, driven mainly through social media, has harvested enough money to buy vital supplements but these are running out.

The environmentalists hope to raise enough money to provide one year's care for Bona.

Donations can be made via with the team's efforts being tracked on

Topics:  elephant environmentalist orphan wildlife

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