Yes, elephants sending texts might seem like a comedy image. But it happens in Kenya. Whenever elephants wearing collars that contain special SIM cards cross a geofence that’s set up using GPS, the animals automatically send a text to rangers, AP reports.
When elephants go after village crops at harvest time, they can take out a lot of food, and villagers can easily lose six months’ income. This way, rangers can rush to the location and scare the elephant off and help villagers.
The Kenya Wildlife Service has been forced to shoot five elephants who were persistent raiders. But by using the collar and SIM card they’re hoping they can stop the behavior. It’s still an experiment, but the Service hopes it will prove effective. However, it’s expensive and difficult – currently the project employs five full-time staff.
Then there’s the question of those SIM-equipped collars, which wear out every give years. Replacing it isn’t the easiest job in the world.
So elephants sending texts can be a good thing. The time to worry will be if you see one tapping in “Hi how r u” on a handset.
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