Dumai, Riau (ANTARA News) - About six wild elephants had trampled and at the same time destroyed at least six hectares of oil palm plantations and two hectares of rubber estates of the farmers of Petani village, Bengkalis regency, Riau, on Tuesday.

Petani village chief Rianto said here that besides destroying the plantations the Sumatra elephants also threatened the villagers.

"To avoid the elephants the villagers stayed away from their plantations, and only stay alert at their homes in the night," Rianto said.

The wild elephants often entered the plantations during the night destroying three to five years old oil palms and rubber trees.

"To scare the big animals away, the villagers normally used fire works normally used to celebrate new year," he said.

Rianto hoped the "war" between elephants and humans in the area could come to an end soon with the support and attention of the local government authorities and the Natural Resources Conservation Agency which had not done enough in this matter.

The conflict between elephants and humans in Petani village, was reported to have lasted for tens of years.

The relevant authorities in Riau had also several times deployed elephant tamers to reduce the conflict, but it did not last long enough, and the big animals came back with their destructive activities in Petani village. (*)

Editor: Kunto Wibisono
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