Touching Farewell: Hundreds of Elephants Gather to Honor Fallen Leader in Sri Lanka

In a heartwarming display of loyalty, a large group of elephants came together to pay their final respects to their deceased leader near Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka.

The touching scene unfolded close to the Kalawewa reserve as the elephants gathered around the lifeless body lying on the banks of a nearby lake.

Using their trunks to touch the fallen giant gently, the elephants showed their love and mourning for their late leader, who was killed in a fight with a rival.

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The incredible event attracted locals who rushed to the site to capture photos and videos of the rare moment.

300 Elephants Gather To Pay Last Respects To Their Leader After He Is Ki.lled By A Rival And Even Caress His Corpse To Say Goodbye
Heartbreaking footage shows the moment a herd of elephants paid its last respects to its dead leader. Source: Daily Mail

Initial footage revealed about ten elephants surrounding their leader, but some sources reported that the number of elephant presents reached up to 300.

Previous studies, such as a 2006 Oxford University research, have shown that elephants experience grief and mourning similarly to humans.

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They often visit the graves of their deceased, tenderly caressing their bodies with their trunks and swaying in apparent sorrow.

300 Elephants Gather To Pay Last Respects To Their Leader After He Is Ki.lled By A Rival And Even Caress His Corpse To Say Goodbye 1
Heartbreaking footage shows the moment a herd of elephants paid its last respects to its dead leader. Source: Daily Mail

The research also highlighted that unlike humans, who typically grieve for close friends and family, elephants show compassion and mourning for even the most distant acquaintances.

Furthermore, they are known to exhibit care for the sick and dying, making efforts to nurse them back to health.

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300 Elephants Gather To Pay Last Respects To Their Leader After He Is Ki.lled By A Rival And Even Caress His Corpse To Say Goodbye 3
Some of the elephants use their trunks to caress the fallen giant, which a rival had killed. Source: Daily Mail
300 Elephants Gather To Pay Last Respects To Their Leader After He Is Ki.lled By A Rival And Even Caress His Corpse To Say Goodbye 4
Researchers have found that elephants, like humans, grieve for the dead by frequently visiting their graves, ‘kissing’ their bodies with their trunks, and rocking to and fro with grief. Source: Daily Mail
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