PATHEIN, Myanmar -- "So, do you want to buy an elephant?" Soe Naing is laughing, but not entirely joking. He owns one of the 2,000-plus elephants facing redundancy since the Myanmar government last year clamped down on the logging industry, in which thousands of elephants have toiled for generations.
From Taungoo in Bago region, a few hours' drive north of Yangon, Soe Naing is one of around 30 participants in a week-long workshop in the Ayeyarwady region delta focused on training elephants through positive reinforcement techniques. It is a system new to the country, which practitioners hope will help end the more brutal practices that have traditionally been used to tame elephants in Asia.