A herd of wild elephants was seen pausing for a spoon while sleeping on an epic 313 mile journey through China that mesmerized the world.
Adorable new aerial footage shows members of the 15-person herd taking a much-needed nap with their calves near Xiyang on Monday after leaving a nature reserve in southern Yunnan Province to migrate north more than a year ago. year, according to BBC News.
The poo pachyderms, which are tracked by 14 government drones, marched about 13 miles from the Kunming area on June 2 to their nap site after heavy rains slowed their journey.
The traveling swingers were escorted by police as they walked near Kunming – a city of 8.5 million people – last week, prompting at least 510 people and more than 110 vehicles to block the roads in order to guide them to safety, according to China Xinhua.
The intrepid herd, which includes three calves, has marched along highways and through cultivated fields, causing economic losses of $ 1.1 million in recent weeks.
It is not known why the animals left their habitat and experts say such a long trip is rare for elephants. But they could be looking for new sources of food due to deforestation, scientists say.
“The size of the rainforests has shrunk, causing wild Asian elephants to leave their homes in Xishuangbanna,” Zhang Li, professor of ecology specializing in the study of elephants, told Beijing News. “The expansion of elephant families also increases their chances of venturing into a new home. “
Chen Mingyong, a professor at the Asian Elephant Research Center at Yunnan University, said the pack leader “may be inexperienced and misled the whole group,” Xinhua said.
The footage also shows the huge mammals rampaging through rural villages, with one baby at one point getting drunk and passing out after eating fermented alcohol.
Officers also arranged snacks such as corn on the cob, bananas and pineapples in an attempt to keep animals away from urban areas.
The migration began in March last year, when the herd left with 17 elephants, according to the Yunnan Forest Fire Brigade, which is responsible for monitoring the elephants.