Loggers in Asia have long used Asian elephants to assist in log transport. Actually, using elephants is more ecologically
sound than using tractors. However, a disturbing trend is developing in Thailand, involving forest elephants and
the powerful stimulant, amphetamine.
Though logging was banned in Thailand by royal decree in 1988, you would not know it because of the thriving illegal
timber trade. Illegal loggers are now feeding elephants amphetamine-laced bananas in an effort to keep the animals
working non-stop to harvest as much wood as possible before the rainy season. The elephants are now addicted to
the drug and as many as 10 have died from exhaustion. A commentator noted that the practice will probably continue
until all of Thailand's forests are gone.
Continued: Economic Restructuring
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