A short video of an elephant in Karnataka's Nagarahole National Park has surprised many experts across the globe.
A short video of an elephant in Karnataka’s Nagarahole National Park has surprised many experts across the globe. It shows an elephant ingesting a piece of charcoal, before blowing out ashes, making it appear like he is smoking. This video was shot by scientists of Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) in April 2016 but has gone viral now.
As per the release issued by the WCS, this video was captured by Vinay Kumar, who is one of the scientists in the society providing insight into different or if one can say the unknown behaviour of the animal.
“The video was taken in Nagarahole National Park when our team, comprising Mr. Kumar, Srikanth Rao and three field staff, was involved in a project undertaking long-term monitoring of tiger and prey populations,” said the release.
The video is the first known video documentation of the wild elephant showing such behaviour, leaving may experts taken aback.
According to Varun R Goswami, an elephant biologist and senior scientist with WCS India Program, the wild elephant may have tried to ingest wood charcoal, as she appeared to be picking up something from the burnt forest floor in the video, blowing away the ash and consuming the rest.
The release also added that the charcoal consists of well recognised toxin-binding properties and even as it may not have nutritional content, wild animals might be attracted to it because of this medicinal value. Charcoal may also serve as a laxative, causing its utility for animals that consume it after forest fires.
This video has been shared extensively by international organisations and publications like Fox News, National Geographic, Science Magazine, and also goung viral on digital media portals. One may also watch the video on WCS India YouTube channel.