Bukit Lawang ePaper created with educational purpose as a research to share important information about flora
and fauna in Gunung Leuser National Park. We are committed to build professional education networks in running the ecotourism
program in Bukit Lawang, North Sumatra, Indonesia. Bukit Lawang Ecotourism established at 2014, comes alongside
its main mission to empower local community in Bukit Lawang and expected to become a guidance for your trip during your holiday
and your adventure in Sumatra. We also offer you our tour package such as jungle trekking, village tour, rafting and many more
activities in the jungle. We hope this program can empower local communities to be able to comprehend ecotourism program.
Sumatran elephants (Elephas Maximus Sumatrensis) are descendants of Asian elephants which can be encountered only in Sumatra island. Sumatran elephants are smaller than the Indian elephant.
Do you know? elephants can’t sweat. To keep their skin cool and elastic they love to take a mud bath. Additionally, the dried mud protects them from insect bites and sunburn. If elephants can’t take a mud bath they’ll bath in water and afterwards they’ll cover themselves with dust, this acts like dried mud.
The elephant habitats are being reduced due to the massive logging, conversion of the rainforest into plantations and agricultural areas, as well as forest fires.
Sumatran elephants inhabit the island of Sumatra start from Aceh, North Sumatra, Riau, Jambi, Bengkulu, South Sumatra and Lampung. Along their extensive area, the Sumatran elephants are using more than one type of forest habitats, ranging from swamp forest, peat swamp forest, lowland rainforest, up to highland rainforest such as Gunung Leuser National Park.
The male Sumatran elephants can reach a height of 1.7 to 2.6 meters and weight of 4 to 6 tons. Male Sumatran elephant ivory is shorter than other Asian elephants species, especially Indian elephants which have greater posture. While the female Sumatran elephants have tusks which are very short and hidden behind the upper lip.
Sumatran elephants (Elephas Maximus Sumatrensis) are able to walk 20 km per day to search the food such as the fresh leaves. Within a day the elephants need 150 kg of leaves and 180 liters of water to drink. This giant herbivores can be aged up to 70 years in the wild and they are very intelligent because they have larger brain than the other terrestrial mammals. While their ears are large enough to help them to hear and to reduce the heat on their body.
Sumatran elephants have a highly structured in social behavior, social life between male and female elephants are very different. The females will spend their lives in family groups consisting of a mother, daughter, sister and aunt. This family group led by the oldest female elephant. If a female elephant is pregnant then 2 - 3 elephants would always accompany her.
While the male elephants spend his life to live alone. An elephant can swim for 6 hours with distance of 50 km. The elephant's trunk contains over 40,000 muscles, divided into as many as 150,000 individual units, while the human body contains 639 muscles.
Elephas Maximus Sumatranus
Kingdom: Animalia, Phylum: Chordata, Class: Mammalia, Order: Proboscidea, Family: Elephantidae, Genus: Elephas, Species: Elephas maximus, Subspecies: Elephas Maximus Sumatranus.
Elephants are highly intelligent animals compared to the land mammals in general. Tamed elephants are able to remember 25 orders. The uniqueness of the elephant is their ability to communicate with a distance of 4 - 5 km. Elephants use infrasound waves to communicate, humans are not able to hear it. If an elephant that left behind by the herd is still within 4 km, then the others will be able to find it.
Author: Bobi Handoko