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Elephant paints self-portrait at Thailand sanctuary

By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |   Feb. 25, 2016 at 8:53 AM

CHIANG MAI, Thailand, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- An elephant at a Thailand sanctuary showed off her art skills by using her trunk to pick up a brush and paint a self-portrait.

Suda, a 4-year-old resident of the Maetaeng Elephant Camp in Chiang Mai, is one of several elephants at the park trained to paint pictures for visitors.

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A video originally posted by YouTube user Fschleyhahn shows Suda using a brush and paper clipped to an easel to paint a self-portrait.

The Maetaeng Elephant Camp was founded in 1996 after a 1989 government ban on logging in Thailand left many elephants formerly used in the trade homeless or forced into the illegal logging business.

"We have dedicated ourselves to protecting the elephants and sustaining the culture of the mahouts [elephant trainers] and their families," the sanctuary's website states.

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