“Eth Athuru Sevana” or the “Elephant Transit Home” is the Asia’s first rehabilitation center for elephants. Established in 1995 by the Wild life Conservation Department the center lies on a 200 acre land on the western boarder of the Udawalawe National Park. with the Udawalawe Reservoir as the southern boarder.
Baby elephants are some times wounded by traps laid by humans or by gunshot injuries. Some calves become orphaned when the mother dies or gets killed. The center takes in the sick , wounded or orphans baby elephants and nourish them until they are capable of living on their own and release them to various national parks.
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, the first of its kind in the world, by contrast takes in orphaned, sick and wounded elephants of all ages and takes care them. These elephants are animal who cannot be released to the wild due to different reasons.
The calves are treated and brought up with minimum human intervention to avoid developing a affinity to humans. The animals in this rehabilitation center have a higher capacity to live freely and it is highly beneficial for their genetic diversity as they are brought from different regions of the country.
Around 220 (elephant) calves have been brought to Eth Athuru Sevana since its inception and in 1998, the fist batch of the elephant calves were released to the wild. Bulk of them were released to Udawalawe National Park and the rest to Lunugamvehera National Park and Maduru Oya National Park. Thereafter number batches of elephants have been released to various parks around the country.
The calves are fed at specified times and the visitors are allowed to see the animals only during morning and evening feeding times. The first feeding for the day is at 9 am. All the calves are fed milk through a funnel one at a time. Each calf is trained to patiently wait till their turn but of course like human kids you will find a few cheeky small ones trying get back in to the queue after being fed or get a additional quota from another feeder.
Among them you will also see a special calf who will never enjoy the freedom of the wild. Namal, named as he was found in the Namal Oya Reservoir area caught in a snare. He was just 2 months old and was severely malnourished and dehydrated when he was found. But with the care of the staff he has now recovered but part of one of the hind leg has been amputated and now fitted with a prosthesis custom build for him.
The Eth Athuru Sevana welcomes any contribution toward feeding the calves which can be in form of cash or milk powder.
Map of the Eth Athuru Sevana
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Traveling to Eth Athuru Sevana
Route From Nuwala Eliya to Eth Athuru Sevana
|Through : Mahagastota|
Distance : 7 km
Travel time :30 mins
Driving Directions : see on google maps