The elephants have made a 500-kilometer (311-英里) journey through the southwestern province of Yunnan from the nature reserve in Xishuangbanna to Yuxi, a city of 2.6 百万人, leaving a trail of destruction in their wake, according to state news agency Xinhua.
It is unclear why they left their nature reserve home, but on their travels, the elephants have caused 412 separate incidents of damage, with financial losses amounting to around 6.8 million yuan ($ 1.1 百万), 新华社报道. They destroyed 56 hectares of farmland in the counties of Yuanjiang and Shiping alone, 该机构说.
The creatures have also caused significant disruption to locals. 上周四, residents were told to stay indoors and pedestrians and vehicles evacuated in the town of Eshan after the elephants roamed the streets for six hours.
Authorities established a 24-hour command center to monitor the animals after they were seen in the Hongta District of Yuxi on Monday, 随着 360 人, 76 police cars and dirt trucks and nine drones mobilized for the task, 和 18 tonnes of elephant food prepared. No casualties have been reported, according to Xinhua.
Monitoring images show the herd is comprised of six female adults, three male adults, three sub-adults and three calves.
Asian elephants are the largest land mammal on the Asian continent, according to the World Wildlife Fund. They are considered a protected species in China, and around 300 of them live in Yunnan, according to Xinhua.