A Colombian biologist has been trampled to death during an unexpected confrontation with an elephant while carrying out research at a Ugandan national park.
Sebastian Ramirez Amaya was killed at the Kibale National Park in Uganda while studying the behaviour and ecology of primates.
The Ugandan national parks authority said in a statement on Monday that Ramirez Amaya was with his research assistant near the Ngogo Chimpanzee Research Station when they happened across a lone elephant that charged at them, forcing them to flee in different directions.
The elephant then followed the victim and trampled him, causing his death.
The Ugandan authority said “there have been no similar incidents in the last 50 years in Kibale National Park”, adding that the “incident is very unfortunate”.
Ramirez Amaya, a researcher at Arizona State University in the USA, studied Ngogo chimpanzees in Uganda and two spider monkey communities in Colombia and Ecuador.
The Department of Biological Sciences of the Universidad de los Andes in the Colombian capital Bogota said in a statement. “We regret the death of Sebastian Ramirez, graduate, colleague and friend. We extend to the entire community the invitation to the farewell tribute that will take place tomorrow (12th April) at 4pm.”
A Saudi Arabian tourist was killed by an elephant while travelling with friends through Murchison Falls National Park in Uganda in late January this year.