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Sabah rescue unit monitoring animal
AN abandoned male baby elephant, believed to be a few weeks old, was rescued by the Sabah Wildlife Department's Wildlife Rescue Unit at a plantation, about 40km from here, on Saturday.
Calling it the "Chinese New Year miracle", the team said it was alerted by the plantation workers who found the baby elephant in a deep moat and unable to move.
"Elephants are one of the best mothers in the animal kingdom. They do not abandon their babies.
The baby elephants are not only cared for by the mother but also by older siblings and other adult females in the herd," said unit head Dr Sen Nathan.
"The baby elephant was found to be severely dehydrated and had cuts and abrasions on its body.
"Veterinarian Dr Diana Ramirez and the rangers administered large amounts of intravenous fluids and treated the wounds."
Dr Sen said although the baby elephant's condition had improved, "it is still not out of the woods yet".
"It would still require constant care to improve in health and survive.
"A veterinarian and four staff are providing the baby elephant with 24-hour intensive care.
"If the baby elephant can survive for the next 72 hours, it has better chances of pulling through."
The population of Borneo Pygmy elephants in Sabah is dwindling fast, with only 2,000 left in the wild.
Its habitat is affected by agricultural and human activities, hence an increase in cases of elephants being killed and orphan elephants rescued.
The Wildlife Rescue Unit focuses on rescuing and translocating wildlife in Sabah. Last month, the team members assisted in the helicopter rescue of a rare female Sumatran rhinoceros here.