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Brazil Will Have the First Elephant Sanctuary in Latin America

06/29/2015 - 09h39

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LUISA PESSOA
FROM SÃO PAULO

By the end of 2016, Brazil will be the first country in Latin America to have an elephant sanctuary.

The project is being developed by the NGO Santuário de Elefantes Brasil - SEB (Elephant Sanctuary in Brazil), which purchased this month an area of 1,100 hectares (or 1,540 soccer fields) in Chapada dos Guimarães (MT), some 40 kilometers from the national park.

The elephants – it is expected that the first three guests will be female – will have soybean plantations and kettle farms as neighbors.

The propriety has areas of preserved native forest, headwaters, slopes and pasture. Ibama, the Brazilian Institute of the Environment, says that SEB has been authorized by the state environment agency.

Junia Machado, the president of SEB, says the goal is to create a place with similar guidelines as those of the U.S.'s TES (Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee) – an institution created in 1995 and a partner of the Brazilian NGO.

One of the elephants to become a resident at the Brazilian sanctuary is Ramba, an Asian female elephant in her 50s, which worked for decades in circuses in Argentina and Chile.

Her past has left permanent marks: scars, abscesses and a chronic kidney problem. The other two elephants are Guida and Maia, both in their 40s.

Brazil was chosen for three main reasons: its location in the center of Latin America, its mild weather, and the maintenance costs, relatively low compared to those of the U.S.

When fully operational, which is expected to occur in five years, the sanctuary will be home to more than 50 elephants. The sanctuary will not do reproductions nor will it be open to the public.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

Read the article in the original language

Global Sanctuary for Elephants/Divulgação
By the end of 2016, Brazil will be the first country in Latin America to have an elephant sanctuary
By the end of 2016, Brazil will be the first country in Latin America to have an elephant sanctuary

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