How Are You, Borobudur Elephants?

SELLA needs to drink about 200 liters of water every day. Sella could spend 50 liters each time she’s drinking. Her meal portions, 150 kilograms every day. She passes more than two-thirds of a day just for drinking and eating. Not surprising Sella’s body weight is currently reaching a ton more, and, consequently, Sella runs so slow.

By SAHRUDIN, MagelangImages

Borobudur Elephant Way Kambas Magelang SahrudinSella it is a female elephant’s name donated by the late Mrs Tien Soeharto (wife of eks-Indonesia President Soeharto) to the TWCB (Borobudur Temple Tourism Park) in 1991. This mammals which Latin name Elephas maximus temminck sumatranus was imported from the Way Kambas National Park, Central Lampung of Lampung Provinces. At that time, Sella was only 16 years old.

In June 29 1992, Minister of Tourism, Post and Telecommunications the late Soesilo Soedarman added two Lampung elephants for the TWCB. Molly and Lizzy, name of those female mammals Soesilo donated.

Seven years later, exactly on July 15, 1999, former Governor of Lampung Oemarsono also to complement the TWCB’s domesticated animals, by sending Bonna and Ecca directly from the Way Kambas National Park. Bonna is a male elephant, while Ecca a female one.

“Name for both elephants was given since they were very small, since they were only several months age, when they were still in Way Kambas, ” Pujo Suwarno, Unit Head of the TWCB, said to MagelangImages.

Those five elephants are now being kept in cages each measuring 8 by 10 meters. To prevent they to become stressed, occasionally, they were released in the park and pool area of ​​10 thousand square meters around their cages. Nearby the cage and playing area for those elephants, the TWCB made the feed measuring 3 by 6 meters.

Each elephant had a trainer (mahout). Sella is trained by Kundori, Molly by Kadir, and Lizzy trained by Nursalim. Bonna and Ecca have 2 mahouts. Bonna is trained by Kipyadi and Heni Sandrawati, while Ecca by Matropin and Wahyuni ​​Handayani.

“They are well-skilled and educated mahouts from the Way Kambas,” Pujo added.

Now, after 19 years in the TWCB, Sella now becomes advanced in painting. This 35-years old elephant can also playing basketball, draping flowers to a tourist’s neck, sitting down and giving salute to visitors. Molly, 32 years old female elephant, now understand if mahout asked her to sit down. Molly can also salute to visitors, and able to retrieve the object with its trunk.

Such skills are also acquired by Lizzy, Bonna and Ecca. “Mahout will give a Davos (local-produced mint candy) if an elephant could obey mahout’s words or commands,” Pujo said.

In addition to lots of drinking, eating elephants is quite large. Within a day, an elephant is able to spend at least 150 kilograms of feed, mostly grass, which obtained from farmers around Borobudur. Elephants are also need additional food such as carrots, coconut midrib, potatoes and even fruits.

“Additional food often called as extra pudding. But pudding for elephant only, ” Pujo said. To feet those elephants, it took about 150 thousands rupiahs each day.

Once in a week, vet (drh, Indonesia) Mahmud Asvan from Yogyakarta Gembiraloka Zoo examines the condition of those five mammals. It is important, because not all elephants are in good health at this time. Molly was suffering from leg ulcers and skin abrasions, Lizzy access affected leg, and Bonna, the only male elephant at the TWCB, impaired in the right tusk and foot access.

“But they can still walk and visitors still can ride each elephant. Their diseases did not differ with scabies in humans, but not contagious to humans. There is seat protector when a visitor go up on an elephant, ” Pujo explained.

Up to now, there have been no female elephants in the TWCB which had the baby. This is due to the only male elephant Bonna less than the maximum when erection. “Maybe Bonna consumes less potent the herbs medicine given,” Pujo said, joking. In fact, elephant Bonna is now 25 years old. Like humans, that is the age of peak puberty for elephants.

For visitors, the TWCB provide 2 (two) types of elephants travel packages, ie safari and attraction packages. Rates for safari package is ranging from 250 thousand to 1 million and 250 thousand rupiahs each person. While tourist who is choosing the atraction package, only charged about 50 thousand rupiahs for 15 minutes ride an elephant.

“Differences between both packages are the facility,” Pujo added. For instance, one of items offered in safari package, is namely Borobudur Dagi Hill Adventure. Being guided by a mahout, a tourist can ride an elephant trace the route starts from the cage, towards the eastern slopes of Dagi Hill and climb to the top of the hill, with views of the Borobudur temple, then down through the hillside to the west, then south slope, and go back to the stable.

” Borobudur Dagi Hill Adventure is about 500 meters, given time 30 minutes, and the tariff is 250 thousands rupiahs,” Pujo explained. Higher tariff package is Borobudur Sileng River Adventure. It costs 1 million and 250 thousands rupiahs pertourist. With a mileage of about 1 kilometer, a visitor will ride an elephant along the rice fields, crossing a small river in the hamlets around the Borobudur Temple. (magelang.images@yahoo.com)

Baca dalam Bahasa Indonesia.

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