Friday, September 20, 2013

India: British Birdwatcher, 68, Trampled, Killed by Male Elephant in Tamil Nadu

According to AFP, British birdwatcher Colin Manvell, 68, was trampled to death by a male elephant near a southern Indian tiger reserve on Thursday (September 20). Manvell lived in Havant, in the south of the UK.

The incident occurred in the Masinagudi forest of Tamil Nadu state's Nilgiris district and was declared dead at a local hospital. 

Manvell arrived in India on September 13 and met up with a local guide on Wednesday. After lunch on Thursday (September 19) went out on foot for birdwatching excursion near a lake, which is also watering hole of wild elephants.

COMMENT:  Manvell was killed just 100 meters (328 feet) from a site where a female tourist was killed by elephants in 2009.

The profusely bleeding Briton was rushed to a local hospital, but there was no doctor to treat him. He was then ferried to a medical facility in Cuddalore city, 23 kilometers away, but died from his injuries in transit.

Manvell was an avid birdwatcher and had been visiting Masinagudi in February and September every year for the last five years.

It is essential that when traveling in areas where wild predators exist, having a "spotter" in the party is also essential, particularly when the objective of the trip is photographing rare birds, which can diminish the focus on dangerous and unpredictable animals who may be in close proximity.