Mahouts are a specialized class of people with a proud professional background. However, the profession is losing its appeal owing to the dwindling importance of captive elephants. We have assessed their incomes, number elephants, background and human casualties by captive elephants through extensive surveys in three captive elephant management systems - private, Hindu temple and forest department prevalent in Tamil Nadu.

India has a long coastal line of over 7500 km supporting vast habitats such as lagoons, backwaters, estuaries, coral reefs and mangrove swamps. Among them, the mangrove ecosystem commands the highest importance because of its biological productivity and specialized diversity. After coral reefs, mangrove forests have the highest productivity among the coastal wetlands.

Captive Asian elephants Elephas maximus are managed in three systems in Tamil Nadu namely, private, Hindu temples and forest department. The authors studied the population size and structure, natality and mortality during 2003-05 in the three systems to assess their long-term viability.