COIMBATORE: A tusker, found dead in the backwaters of Bhavanisagar dam in Sirumugai Forest Range, is suspected to have lost its life during infighting with another elephant.
A post-mortem carried out by a team led by A Sukumar, forest veterinary officer, Coimbatore, on Wednesday revealed that the animal could have succumbed to injuries in infighting in Pethikuttai forest area.
“The carcass bore multiple injuries in its lower jaw and all over its body. It eventually suffered profuse bleeding and was unable to chew and consume food. For more than two weeks the elephant was starving and turned anemic, resulting in its death,” said an official.
Samples were collected to be sent for further laboratory testing. After the post-mortem, the carcass of the animal has been buried in the spot.
Curiously, Pethikuttai in Sirumugai has turned out to be a hotspot for elephant deaths with at least five elephants losing their lives and many among them diagnosed with liver infection. The backwaters of Bhavanisagar reservoir serves as a water source for elephants, which migrate from across Tamil Nadu, neighbouring Kerala and Karnataka states.
A committee formed to probe the death of wild elephants in the Coimbatore forest division has already recommended environmental toxicology research studies to know if elephants were dying due to pesticide used in crops.