COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - Sri Lanka is preparing for its first census of elephants in the island’s forests to help protect the endangered species against the loss of its habitat.
The head of the country’s Wildlife Department, Chandrawansa Pathiraja, said the census will run over two days, beginning Aug. 13.
Elephants will be counted as they come to drink from water holes, reservoirs, and tanks.
With the survey, Pathiraja said, the department hopes to find out the minimum number of elephants, the distribution of their population, and the composition of the herds, including males, females, babies, and tuskers.
The census will also help the government determine whether it needs legislation to regulate the elephant population.
“The census we do can be used for many years for the policymakers and government authorities in order to prepare policies and projects aimed at conservation of elephants,’’ Pathiraja said.