On a two week rotation in the jungles of Sumatra. This is home away from home for elephant handlers and forest police working side by side in the Way Kambas National Park (camp Bungur) to help protect the precious habitat that is home to some of the most endangered species on the planet. Including of course the wild Sumatran elephant herds still calling the national park home. Daily patrols venture out to track illegal activity and locate wild elephant herds to make sure they do not enter into nearby villages. This is a crucial activity to help maintain any kind of harmony and prevent human/elephant conflict. For 2 weeks at a time this is called home until the next rotation of elephant handlers and forest polica arrive.
When you are on the way to a remote location to set camera traps and your patrol team come across a river full of water hyacinth plants for 2 kilometers. It took us 24 hours to meander our way through this mess to finally be on our way to our destination. Extending our trip by another 2 days we managed to get all cameras in place.
A gorgeous herd of wild elephants make their way across the Way Kambas National park in the early morning hours captured on the Berdiri (http://www.berdiri.org) camera traps.
I’ve seen and photographed the patrol elephants across all the provinces of Sumatra and this is one of my favourte bath time photos. All the elephants are bathed before they are taken on patrol to help protect the jungles and the remaining willdife from us humans. You can buy this print, link in the description.
Nothing fills your heart with any more love than the sight of a beautiful family of wild elephants making their way through their natural habitat. Check out the little cutie in the middle. A beautiful thing to see on our camera traps. A lot of hard work goes into capturing such a simple image/video. Despite our best efforts most of our camera traps have been stolen by poachers in the area. But the camera traps we manage to maintain have captured some of the amazing wildlife still remaining inside the protected area of the Way Kambas National Park.
Bang Distnan putting the final touches on a camera trap deep in the jungles of Sumatra. Documenting these amazing elephants across Sumatra means spending up to 10 days at a time hiking the jungles of Sumatra in search of locations to capture the elephants in the wild with camera traps. I have a camera trap program running across the Way Kambas National Park as well as the TWA Seblat Conservation area in Bengkulu. We spend days tracking and looking for the right locations and place camera traps. The issues we often face are poachers and illegal loggers who happen to stumble across the camera traps and steal them from fear of being caught so we take every precaution to secure the camera traps and camouflage them with paint as best we can.