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Pygmy Elephant Fatally Gores Borneo Tourist

Aussie veterinarian may have startled animal, rangers say
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2011 12:02 AM CST
Pygmy Elephant Fatally Gores Borneo Tourist
Pygmy elephants cross a road in Taliwas forest in Malaysia's Sabah state on Borneo Island.    (AP Photo/Vincent Thian, File)

(Newser) – An Australian veterinarian with a passion for conservation has been killed by a pygmy elephant while trekking in a remote wildlife park in Borneo. Jenna O'Grady Donley, 25, was fatally gored by the animal as she, a friend, and their guide were trekking near a mud volcano, AP reports. Rangers are searching for the elephant, believed to be a fully grown male around 6 feet tall, and plan to drive it back into the forest.

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Officials believe the trekkers may have startled the elephant when they stopped to photograph it. Donley and her friend "weren't reckless people, they're very measured and careful, respectful of animals' environments," her mother tells the Sydney Morning Herald. "So this is an accident that's happened—a very tragic accident." Authorities at the University of Sydney's Faculty of Veterinary Science, where Donley was an accomplished student, say her work, including a study of renal failure in big cats, will leave a lasting legacy. (Read more animal attack stories.)

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