Elephant play a great and significant role in our environment. Read on as we elucidate with examples how inevitable this species is to sustenance
Bengaluru: The barbaric murder of a pachyderm in Kerala has sent shock waves around the country.
A poor and helpless creature was fed with a pineapple laced with explosives, which led to its eventual death, after it meandered in search of water for days and stood motionless in a water body.
There are also news reports that the fruit bomb was kept targeting wild boars. But even if one were to go by this theory, the life of a wild boar is as important as any other living being.
There must be other innocuous and humane ways to direct animals away from fields and crops. Killing them with bombs, masquerading as fruits is abominable and reprehensible.
Today (June 5) is World Environment Day. Since the whole of the country laments and condoles the death of the elephant, let’s talk about the role of the elephant in our environment and how imperative it is to maintain the balance.
Elephants help create minor water bodies
Sounds interesting! Elephants are known to use their trunks to locate water and further use their tusks to dig out water. Once the water body is formed, it is not just elephants but even other animals which make use of the water body to quench their thirst. This becomes useful in drought-hit areas.
Elephants distribute seeds!
These mammoth creatures also play a key role in dispersing of seeds. Elephants are herbivorous animals. They consume plants and fruits along with their seeds. As they consume them and loiter around, they help plant these seeds with the help of their dung! The dung is also a repository of nutrients. With this act, elephants help create new habitats.
Elephants give food to other beings
Elephant dung is a source of food, especially for insects. And these insects act as a food for birds.
Even butterflies hover around the freshly deposited dung as they feel warm. It is also said that the dung has minerals essential for reproduction. So male butterflies feed on it.
How elephants act as shelter
These mammoth creatures are a godsend for other creatures who are much, much lesser in size compared to them.
The footprints of elephants provide predator-free breeding grounds for frogs and help them improve their population.
There are a myriad other uses rendered by elephants. Hence they are aptly called keystone species, which means they provide vital ecosystem services, which are inevitable for the sustenance of other species.
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Last Updated Jun 5, 2020, 6:00 PM IST