The elephant was radio collared and set free from its kraal at Chikkala forest area on Monday.
“The animal had moved to Sigur area on Tuesday morning and further to Masinagudi by night. En-route Rivaldo joined two more elephants and was foraging along with them. But later it got separated from them. We are constantly tracking the elephant, which has come out of the core forest area. Efforts have also been taken to prevent the animal from straying again into human settlements,” said a senior forest department official.
For a brief while on Monday night, the Rivaldo lost track due to signal issues in the radio collar fitted on the animal. “Soon, a team comprising anti-poaching watchers and other staff managed to track the animal. Then, the signal too got restored. We were then able to keep a close watch on the animal,” added the official.
Forest department officials maintained that elephants generally have a strong memory and were known to use the same pathway. The animal is now just a few kilometers away from Vazhaithottam, where it was actually wandering all these years by feeding on food given by tourists and local villagers. Over the last three months, the elephant was confined in a kraal and treated by the forest department for its trunk injury.