– The size of the elephant’s body or Borneo elephant (Elephas maximus borneensis) is smaller than the elephant in general. While Asian elephants can be as high as 3.5 meters, African elephants reach 4 meters, the maximum elephant height of Kalimantan is only 2.5 meters.

Being the smallest type of elephant in the world, this animal is dubbed a Pygmy Elephant or dwarf Borneo. Despite its small size, Kalimantan elephants are able to walk seven to 13 kilometers a day.

In addition, Kalimantan elephants have a unique tail length. The tail can reach the ground floor. These elephants also have ears that are wider and the ivory shape is relatively more straightforward than other elephants.

His facial expression looks like a baby elephant, and is not aggressive. His body was even more rounded than the slimmer Sumatran elephant body.

Kalimantan elephants are subspecies of Asian elephants. These animals can only be found in small areas of Borneo, including in the Sabah region of Malaysia and the northern region of East Kalimantan.

In their habitat, female elephants generally live in groups. Male elephants live alone and only meet females during the mating season. Females only give birth to one child with a pregnancy period of 19 to 21 months.

The Agabag Dayak tribe community around the habitat of the Kalimantan elephants calls the elephant “Grandma”. Elephants are considered sacred animals and should not be disturbed or antagonized. The person who violates it will have a bad luck.

At present, there are only a few remaining endemic elephants in Kalimantan. In Indonesia, it is estimated that there are only 30 to 80. Of that number, 5-20 of them are estimated to be male elephants. Therefore, the IUCN sets Kalimantan elephants in the status of endangered species.


The main habitat of elephants in Kalimantan is in Tulin Onsoi District, Nunukan Regency, North Kalimantan. Kalimantan elephants are scattered around the upper reaches of the Sebuku River, North Kalimantan, namely the Agison River and the Sibuda River in the west and the Apan River and the Tampilon River in the east.

While the number of Kalimantan elephants in the Sabah region, Malaysia, is more numerous, estimated at 1,500-2,000. Its habitat is directly adjacent to Tulin Onsoi District.

The Kalimantan elephant habitat is in the “Heart of Borneo” region or an initiative area from Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia and Malaysia in an effort to protect the environment.

Although the population is less than those in neighboring countries, the existence of Kalimantan elephants in Indonesia remains significant for the country’s biodiversity. Kalimantan elephant habitat must be maintained amid threats to its natural habitat.

Habitat damage

Forest and land conversion for the development of oil palm plantations are considered to be the main contributors to the loss of elephant habitat in Kalimantan. From 2003 to 2010, around 16 percent of Borneo elephant’s habitat area turned into oil palm plantations.

As a result, the area of ​​movement of elephants to move and find food is increasingly limited and makes it into the human area.

For this reason, the remainder of the elephant’s main habitat must be maintained. In addition, prevention of hunting also needs to be encouraged.

Conservation efforts must also be improved, considering that in the future there will be challenges and obstacles to maintain and increase the carrying capacity of the population and habitat of the Kalimantan elephant.

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