Life off the Leash- Tourism elephants at Tiger Tops
Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge is where our lab currently conducts all our Asian elephant field research. Located in Southern Nepal on the border of Chitwan National Park, this eco-lodge is promoting sustainable eco-tourism with Asian elephants through encouraging tourists to walk with elephants rather than engage in riding activities and learning about their care.
In Asia, when not working for tourism or commercial purposes, elephants are usually chained. Tiger Tops is one of only two tourism lodges in Nepal which use large paddocks or “corrals” in which to house their elephants during the tourist season. During the monsoon season when the lodge closes, the elephants and their handlers go into the nearby National Park so the elephants can naturally forage, giving the elephants a well-rounded diet. The lodge also employs two elephant carers or “mahouts” for each elephant who are responsible for elephant care and exercise.
It is because of these high welfare standards and level of elephant care that our lab chose to work at this site.