สถานีเพาะเลี้ยงสัตว์ป่าช่องกล่ำบน translates as Wild Gully Wildlife Station. It is an ethical wildlife sanctuary recommended by Amazing Thailand but it is still 'off the beaten track'. It can only be found by using the Thai name and there are no English signs but Google maps will get you there without a problem.
It is sometimes called the Queen Sirikit Animal Sanctuary because she once came here, a very long time ago, and gave it her seal of approval. There is inside the park a wildlife rehabilitation centre which bears the royal ensignia and Sirikit's name alongside photos of her visit. It is located somewhere near Nong Mak Fai in the Pang Sida area of Ta Praya National Park and is only reachable with your own transport although a rented motorbike would suffice.
I met with a chap who I think has the best job in the world as the park's caretaker with onsite accommodation and all bills paid and he told me the park is financed from the Royal purse though it was set up by the Wildlife Sanctuary Bureau of Forestry Department by Royal Decree.
If there is only Thai signage then you are pretty much 'Off the beaten track' and if they only speak Thai it doesn't matter. Don't let that put you off because appreciation of animals and nature reserves is International. Besides we can all compare symbols even if we don't know what they mean so on the third line of the sign outside says it is สถานีเพาะเลี้ยงสัตว์ป่าช่องกล่ำบน which is virtually unpronouncable but is the Wild Gully Wildlife Station or as Amazing Thailand calls it Chong Klam Bon Wildlife Breeding Station.
It is not well described in English and yes they have a breeding program but it is not for tourism, it is for research, and re-introduction. You can volunteer here though speaking Thai would probably be a requirement although they do have overseas visitors from the animal professions. For more info contact the DLA or DNP.
In the rescue centre are beautifully manicured gardens and you are constantly reminded by the Hornbills that they are the main attraction in the cages. The sign on a row of huge cages said all the birds were rescued and are being rehabilitated so they can be put back in the wild. Many of the signs on the pens were also in English much to my appreciation because knowing a bit of Thai doesn't mean you know the Thai word for Hornbill is Nok Gahaang, although I do now, or that rehab' is Karpakfoon especially when mixed in with a load of words about releasing into the wild.
There were lots of big birds, and they are impressive, too many macaques and gibbons, and a crocodile that had taken residence in someones swimming pool. Not sure they can release a croc', I fear it will be resident here from now on, not that a crocodile cares.
Some animals are penned in and it is sad. I wish everything here was perfect but it comes down to funds and urgency. They live hand to mouth and get animals brought in to them daily and when they are not brought in the rangers have to go on the road and rescue them. Often it is as simple as collecting an animal that has been taken to a vet's surgery but I saw a news item where they had to fetch an elephant and take it to a housing.
I doubt if they wanted the Python but snakes are nearly always killed in Isan because of the danger. About 2,500 die every year from snake bites in Thailand and many of them are children. Nearly all of Thailand's snakes are venomous including Cobras, Kraits, Vipers, and Corals but a Python is not. But I'm afraid that would not stop a Thai killing it and as a result some of these snakes are now endangered.
The moonbear has probably not been rescued in the wild. It had no signs so I presume it had just arrived and it is probably confiscated from a bear farm. These poor animals are clamped in a cage and bile is extracted from thier gaul bladder. It is nothing less than torture for an illegal Chinese trade.
I don't know what the fox is about. It had a broken leg. They have a bit of everything here.
Small news item about Wild Gully. It isn't in English but you get a feel for what the place is about.
There are nature trails and a school, forests and woodlands, they grow fruit-trees for birds and fox bats and fruit bats. I love this place because it is quiet yet noisy with all the wildlife. It is serene and yet a reminder of some peoples cruelty. But most of all it shows the very best of Thailand's care for the environment and the role model staff of park rangers.