Talk:Asian elephant

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Untitled[edit]

There is a new elephant. The tests - which used the elephant's poo! - revealed that they became separated from other elephants around 300,000 years ago. They ended up on the Malaysian island of Borneo.

our elephant quiz</A> Anybody can update accordingly...Yosri 10:59, 2 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Domestication[edit]

Are any elephants used as beasts of burden actually domesticated, i.e. bred and reared specifically for human purposes? Jared Diamond's book Guns, Germs, and Steel say all elephants used as such are actually tamed, not "domesticated" in the technical sense. k 14:06, 10 August 2006 (PST)

The use of the term "Domestication" with respect to elephants is not appropriate and contributes to widespread misunderstanding as well as undermines conservation status in the wild. Domestication refers to the process by which organisms are selectively bred by humans for certain attributes (e.g. docility, size, yield) over multiple generations. Asian elephants have never been domesticated in this sense, with work animals typically being captured from the wild and females being bred by wild males. Capture of elephant calves for work and tourism in fact threatens the viability of wild populations ( Leimgruber et al. 2008). Though today there are elephants born in captive facilities, they are not truly "domesticated." Thus this term needs revision throughout the literature concerning this species and its conservation status. 129.82.80.215 (talk) 20:29, 1 April 2014 (UTC)Sherminds (talk) 20:32, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Size[edit]

Are the Asian elephants smaller than the Forest Elephant? I thought the Forest Elephant was the smallest Elephant. john k 15:38, 24 August 2005 (UTC)

Also, the first sentence in the size section "As is common with large animals, the dimensions of the Asian elephant are often exaggerated" either needs a citation or needs to be deleted. -Thomas — Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.99.150.50 (talk) 21:21, 30 December 2015 (UTC)

Citation needed[edit]

Remove the following which looks suspect

Asian Elephants are more closely related to mammoths then they are to African Elephants. So it probably would be better to place the Asian Elephant in the genus Mammuthus, or to place all mammoths in the genus Elephas.

Shyamal 05:47, 25 February 2006 (UTC)

Removed Hannibal's elephant Sarus[edit]

I have removed the reference to the leader elephant of Hannibal's stock. The fact that he was called "Syrian" does by no means indicate that he belonged to a Syrian subspecies. The Seleucids kings, who ruled in Syria in hellenistic times, used Indian elephants for their campaigns, which is well attested from ancient sources.

If Hannibal had a "Syrian" war-elephant, that probably meant he had been given an elephant of the Seleucid stock, possibly with the Ptolemies of Egypt as middlehand. The fact that Syrian elephants were extinct in 100 BCE is also very suspicious. 100 BCE is around the time when the Seleucids stopped using war-elephants, because their empire was falling to pieces. --Sponsianus 09:39, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

Colbert related vandalism[edit]

I tried to remove the "tripled" statement but got lagged out. Bensaccount 04:22, 1 August 2006 (UTC)


Thai Elephants robbed to Australia, by Thai government[edit]

Thai state agencies and a successful mission to "robbed" 8 Thai elephants to Australia.

  • Pa Ti Bat Kan Plon Chang Thai ปฏิบัติการปล้นช้างไทย (in Thai), OPEN Online (online magazine); first published in Matichon (newspaper), 6 August 2006

There's a rumour that Australian zoo paid around 2,000 Million THB for this. And Thai government agreed. -- anyway, IUCN, the World Conservation Union, categorized Thai Elephant as "Endangered", and no trade is allowed whatsoever.

National symbol of India?[edit]

This is included in Category:National symbols of India, but I thought Royal Bengal Tiger was the national animal. Can someone clarify and provide references, please? --Ragib 22:02, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

causes of population reduction[edit]

it would be nice if this page contained information on why the elephants are on the endangered species list and what is casuing the population reduction. also what is being done to preserve the populations could be included. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 192.124.34.175 (talkcontribs) .


FYI, according to TheWildOnes.org, the Asian Elephant is extinct in the wild of China. Just to let you know. This is a beautiful animal and its almost depressing that it could be totally extinct within the next 50 years... Chasingrainbows 16:23, 30 January 2007 (UTC)chasingrainbows

There wasnt even any detail on the number left. I've sourced that and added it to the lead, where I think it belongs. Hornplease 15:58, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

asian elephants are bred and domesticated all around the countries of the Indian ocean, and even worshipped in some societies. interesting to see that it's actually considered "endangered", while the african bush elephant is just "vulnerable" and the african forest elephant is considered "endangered", while those two species are hunted excessively. as an elephant species with less attitude against humans, these guys are still widely used by large populations in India. so I say that it can't be THAT endangered. that's why there NEEDS to be more info on why populations are dropping so fast. Spincrus 14:17, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

Why the capitalization?[edit]

Why is this article entitled "Asian Elephant" instead of "Asian elephant" ? --75.58.54.17 01:56, 19 October 2007 (UTC)

See WP:BIRD for the rationale. = UtherSRG (talk) 10:54, 19 October 2007 (UTC)
Irrelevant. First, those are only suggestions, which do not trump proper grammar and spelling. Second, WP:BIRDS does not even apply to anything except birds. --Tenebrae (talk) 21:15, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

Nepal[edit]

I saw a thing on the internet mentioning a new subspecies in Nepal that looked 'mastadonic'? It had photos. It said about 100 were said to be alive? Some mention of that, or at least a thing saying that it has been proven or disproven or is in the proces... —Preceding unsigned comment added by 199.8.26.10 (talk) 19:07, 5 October 2008 (UTC)

Extinct?[edit]

The first paragraph of the article indicates only three subspecies of elephant are not extinct, yet the subspecies articles indicate these elephants are still in existence, though generally in low numbers. Clarification is needed? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 209.139.226.8 (talk) 12:39, 4 November 2008 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: will be done when the redirect is deleted. Kotniski (talk) 09:23, 6 March 2011 (UTC)


Asian ElephantAsian elephant — Animal names are not proper nouns. A dog is not "a Dog"; more pointedly, an African elephant is not an "African Elephant".--Tenebrae (talk) 21:16, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

Support move. Spidey104 20:02, 27 February 2011 (UTC)
  • Support uncontroversial, use sentencing in titles. walk victor falk talk 10:31, 28 February 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.
Yes check.svg Done JohnCD (talk) 12:37, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

Average weight?[edit]

The article gives only maximum weights. What about the average weight of adult elephants? Please add! -- 77.189.15.126 (talk) 11:27, 13 May 2011 (UTC)

"taxonomy" tidy-up time[edit]

This section is not tidy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_rhino

I suggest the above page as an idea towards a layout. The current information can be spliced into the list as a brief description of each subspecies or can be included at the end of the list to add further meaning to the list. Wuku (talk) 22:06, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Kerala 2011 fact request[edit]

I was surprised to see the fact challenge re: Kerala festival elephants, having worked with software teams based there.

The facts required for the atatement challenged are in existing wp articles, so I have provided those links.

Is that sufficient to meet FACT markup challenge ? I have removed the challenge as the links should suffice.

Thanks for feedback, as this is my first time making that sort of change to a wp article's markup.

G. Robert Shiplett 12:03, 31 March 2012 (UTC) - Previous comment added by Grshiplett (talk · contribs).

If there are reliable sources cited in other articles that support the challenged material, then those sources should also be cited in this article. Please remember that Wikipedia is not a reliable source. Reliable sources cited in other articles should be checked to verify that they do indeed support the material for which the citations are given. Also, please sign all of your posts on talk pages by adding four tildes (~~~~) at the end of the post. -- Donald Albury 15:58, 1 April 2012 (UTC)

Fact check[edit]

Photo text: " At this elephant training camp, captive elephants are taught to handle logs. "

Is it a fact that the site in question is training using goads ?

see "stimulus" at http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/stimulus

Is there scientific evidence from qualified unscheduled observers (audit) that Indian Elephants are not being "broken" at this camp in the manner not unlike that in which horses were routinely "broken" in the past in the USA and elsewhere? Does the "training camp" only accept previously "broken" elephants (as with many specialty horse "trainers") ?

The wp horse training article smooths the issue over by suggesting that "breaking" a horse is a synonym for, I quote,

 "The act of getting on a horse for the first time goes by many names, including backing, breaking, mounting, and simply riding."

For an alternate view, see the quasi-documentary with Robert Redford: "Buck". Buck Brannaman is not mentioned nor is there yet a See Also at horse training, perhaps an issue of NPOV.

G. Robert Shiplett 12:53, 31 March 2012 (UTC)

Photo overkill[edit]

While the photos are great, the sheer number creates display issues — even on a wide-screen monitor, one of the images overlaps part of text, etc. It is recommended that many of them be put in a {{Gallery}}, especially any which are not directly associated with the narrative, or are redundant. Currently the text and images often to not correspond. ~Thanks for your attention on this matter, ~E: 74.60.29.141 (talk) 21:27, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

Hmm. They all display fine for me, but I agree with what you said about redundancy and non-correspondence. I'll see about thinning the herd (if you'll excuse the dreadful metaphor). Rivertorch (talk) 04:28, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
Updating the above: I removed two images—File:Indian Elephant.jpg and File:Asian Elephant Elephas maximus.jpg—which didn't seem to add to the article in any significant way. The remaining ones all seem to illustrate something significant about the Asian elephant, but I guess a couple more could be cut if push came to shove. I moved three other images around a bit. There are probably a couple more that could be shuffled, but I'm curious to know how the article looks now. Any display problems? Rivertorch (talk) 05:10, 7 December 2012 (UTC)

Basically I also think there were too many pics -- nice work, Rivertorch !! I would even go a little further in sorting out and removing pics, and suggest

  • moving all the ones taken in captivity -- i.e. in both zoos and ele camps -- further down next to the section "In captivity";
  • showing 2 of skeletons is sufficient -- so I would opt for removing the one from the Kolkata National Museum;
  • instead : inserting one or two close up pics showing either trunk, skin or tusks from this collection next to the "Characteristics" section;

What do you think ?
When some (long) time ago I had revised the "Distribution and habitat" section, there were 3 pics, one of each subspecies, next to the text, but I suppose they all got displaced due to other pics being added somewhat randomly. If you are ready for some more pushing and shoving -- I'm in as well. BhagyaMani (talk) 11:16, 7 December 2012 (UTC)

Oh, sure. Let's push and shove. I agree with your changes so far, and what you say makes sense. Rivertorch (talk) 17:18, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
Let me know whether you like the changes. There are many more nice pics taken in the wild, which I prefer to all the ones taken in zoos, the more so as everybody can see them there anyway. There is no pic yet in the section "Threats" -- I would like to put one showing what a deforested area looks like that once used to be elephant habitat, or an ivory pic. -- BhagyaMani (talk) 19:19, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
Nice work! Here's a deforestation picture from a prime elephant habitat in Arunachal - File:Jhum.jpg and my search skills are bad but an ivory seal from Japan is an apt picture for threats as that's a big market for Asian elephant ivory. (Yathin S Krishnappa (talk) 20:34, 7 December 2012 (UTC))
GREAT pic, Yathin sk !! Thanks for the link !! Since its foremost African ivory that is traded in Thailand and China, an ivory pic in this article may be a bit far-fetched (?) One showing some kind of conflict situation may be better to illustrate the link between deforestation and human-elephant conflict. -- BhagyaMani (talk) 21:17, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
As far as I know (and there's literature around) the Japanese seals are among the the most popular uses of ivory today. Perhaps something like File:Indian_-_Powder_Flask_-_Walters_71419_-_Back.jpg can illustrate the end product of ivory? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Yathin sk (talkcontribs) 21:37, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
Saw this one too. Then I will add a few lines about ivory trade in Thailand; have some reports about this issue; and place this pic next to text -- tomorrow. BhagyaMani (talk) 21:43, 7 December 2012 (UTC)

Nice work, people. I've really enjoyed looking at the new pics, and I think they're excellent choices. I do have some slight reservations about the sudden lack of zoo pics, though. The reality is that there are a lot of Asian elephants in zoos, so it seems a bit odd that the article doesn't acknowledge that graphically. Maybe we could have just one. (But not this one! The perspective was jarring and afaik most zoo elephants don't get to go walkies.) Rivertorch (talk) 08:46, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

Then how is about this idea: lets also write something about the endangered species breeding programme under "Conservation". A zoo pic would then correspond to text. -- BhagyaMani (talk) 15:51, 8 December 2012 (UTC)
That article doesn't seem to say anything about elephants, though. I'm going to look around and see what else I can find. You're right—it would be best to tie in the pic to the text. One thing I'd like to know, but the article doesn't say, is how many Asian elephants reside in zoos? Worldwide, it must be a significant population. Rivertorch (talk) 06:31, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

It looks much better now. It seemed chaotic before, and the pics ran down below the refs. I didn't really intend to suggest removing them entirely, how about having a {{gallery}} for the leftovers? I am currently collaborating on a major overhaul of Cultural depictions of elephants (volunteers welcome!) and what we are doing is putting pics in a gallery and retrieving them when discussed. ~ Which reminds me: would it be okay to put either a "Main article..." or "Further information..." link in your 'In culture' section? Or how about at least including Cultural depictions of elephants in the 'See also' list? ~Thanks again, ~E:74.60.29.141 (talk) 04:16, 9 December 2012 (UTC) [a.k.a.: ~Eric F]

Personally, I hate galleries. When I had a much slower Internet connection, the presence of galleries made editing certain articles painfully time-consuming. Not an issue for me anymore, but it still is for some of our contributors (not to mention our non-contributor readers) in certain parts of the world). The other problem with galleries is that they become something of a dumping ground for all sorts of images that don't really add anything to the article and are best residing over at Commons (which does have a category linked from this article). Just my opinion. Rivertorch (talk) 06:31, 9 December 2012 (UTC)
Neither do I like galleries and agree with Rivertorch, the more so as there is the Commons link to a vast collection of pics. -- BhagyaMani (talk) 10:13, 9 December 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps you're right. Except for an actual gallery representing an artist's work, or similar. The article I'm working on is tagged "Under construction" and the gallery is basically a drop-box for potentially useful images. Another thing I've noticed about a different article I did for an actual artist, is that once you create a gallery for the good stuff, folks feel compelled to add the [other] [stuff]. ~E:74.60.29.141 (talk) 12:28, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 1 April 2014[edit]

Please change the following text:

"The genus Elephas originated in Sub-Saharan Africa during the Pliocene ranging throughout Africa into southern Asia.[2] The earliest indications of domestication of Asian elephants are engravings on seals of the Indus Valley civilization dated as third millennium BC.[6]"

into the following: "The genus Elephas originated in Sub-Saharan Africa during the Pliocene ranging throughout Africa into southern Asia.[2] The earliest indications of the use of Asian elephants in captivity are engravings on seals of the Indus Valley civilization dated as third millennium BC.[6]"

Also please change the heading "Domestication" into "Elephants in Captivity" and all such references throughout the document (e.g. "domestic"/"domesticated elephants" to "captive elephants")

And correspondingly please change the following text: "The first historical record of the domestication of Asian elephants was in Harappan times.[30] Ultimately, the elephant went on to become a siege engine, a mount in war, a status symbol, a Beast of burden, and an elevated platform for hunting during historical times in South Asia.[31]"

Into: "Contrary to popular belief, the Asian elephant has never been domesticated. Domestication entails the selective breeding of an organism by humans over multiple generations in favor of particular traits. In contrast, elephants have historically been captured from the wild for use in human activities. The first historical record of use of elephants in captivity was in Harappan times.[30] Ultimately, the elephant went on to become a siege engine, a mount in war, a status symbol, a Beast of burden, and an elevated platform for hunting during historical times in South Asia.[31]" Today, the capture of elephants from the wild is banned in most range states, yet illegal capture is a pressing conservation concern as many wild populations are threatened. Leimgruber et al. 2008 and de Silva et al. 2013)

Justification: There is no such thing as a domesticated elephant. The term "domestic" and variants thereof should not be used with respect to Asian elephants, as this species has never truly been domesticated in the sense that it has never been selectively bred by humans over multiple generations. Many of the elephants used in captivity are wild-caught, and despite modern-day attempts to breed elephants in captivity the species does poorly in captivity and is not nor has it ever been "domesticated." Widespread misuse of this term leads to confusion regarding the status conservation status of Asian elephants, which are endangered and highly threatened in the wild. Capture from the wild for use in captivity in fact continues to endanger wild populations (see Leimgruber et al. 2008 and de Silva et al. 2013). Currently the capture of elephant calves from the wild is banned but an illegal trade exists. Since Wikipedia is so widely consulted by the public, this misconception is worth correcting here first. Please see "Domestication" in the Talk section. Sherminds (talk) 20:55, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please establish a consensus for this alteration before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. This sounds like the sort of change which should have an actual consensus before it is implemented. Thanks, Celestra (talk) 04:18, 10 April 2014 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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