NEWS: Bull elephant kills Australian woman tourist in Borneo

Sourced from The Star

Published: Wednesday December 7, 2011 MYT 6:16:00 PM

Bull elephant kills Australian woman tourist in Borneo


KOTA KINABALU: An Australian woman tourist taking pictures was gored to death by a bull elephant in Sabah’s east coast Tabin Wildlife Reserve.Jenna OGrady Donley, 26, a Sydney-based veterinarian, was attacked by the elephant, which was apparently startled by the sounds of the camera’s shutter and flash, in the 6.30am incident on Wednesday

Witnesses claimed that she could not flee in time as the elephant suddenly charged at her while her woman companion and guide escaped in the attack at this 123,00ha wildlife reserve about 100km from Lahad Datu town.

State Wildlife Department director Dr Laurentius Ambu said the women and their guide had gone to a nearby mud volcano and decided to take the wildlife trail on their way back to the resort.

Ambu said the group had gone off the trail to snap photographs of the wild elephant, which he suspected was a single bull.

Single bull elephants normally isolate themselves and their behaviour is difficult to predict and often dangerous, he said, adding people should keep their distance from such elephants or any wildlife for that matter.

Ambu learned that the women had stopped about 10m from the animal and started clicking away their cameras.

This might have provoked the elephant which suddenly turned around and charged at them, he said, adding the others escaped but the woman could not as she was the closest to the animal.

He said police are investigating the matter, adding the woman’s remains have been sent to the Lahad Datu hospital for an autopsy.



  1. Tadpole said,

    December 14, 2011 at 9:48 AM

    It’s a sad incident that can be avoided. 😦 I’ve seen tour guides who took tourists too close to the elephants in Kinabatangan, when the patrol boats of WWF & Sabah Wild Dept not around..

  2. losttraveller said,

    December 15, 2011 at 11:58 AM

    Wild animals are hard to predict. Being a tour guide myself, I admit that I sometimes get careless as well since we’ve done this so many times without any incidents. But it only takes that one accident…

  3. Mus said,

    February 13, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    maybe we need to understand the elephant lifestyle, habitat, etc.

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