Thailand falls in love with a giant buffalo

(Bangkok) Role in TV series, meeting with the Prime Minister: Ko, a 1.5 ton water buffalo, has become a celebrity in Thailand after being recently sold for a record price of 18 million baht, or nearly 500,000 Canadian dollars.

The bulky bovine, full name Ko Muang Phet, was known in Thai agricultural circles as a breeding animal, but it was its high-price sale last week that established its fame.

Standing 1.8 meters tall, this four-year-old albino from the western province of Phetchaburi weighs about three times more than the average of his peers.

Ko has already become a television star, appearing in an episode of the hugely popular soap opera Sound From The Field Of Love.

He had the honors of a reception at government headquarters on Wednesday, where Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, 1.92 m, posed alongside him.

“I didn’t know we had such beautiful buffalo,” Srettha told the assembled reporters, carefully tapping one of the creature’s enormous curved horns.

The Buffalo Breeders’ Association has called on the government to promote these animals as a tool for ” soft power “, he explained in a message published on X.

Water buffalo, also called wild Asian buffalo, are omnipresent in the Thai countryside.

They are valued as sturdy and reliable farm animals, and albino specimens are particularly valuable due to their rarity.

Last year, a farmer in Phitsanulok province, according to media reports, sold his 1.4 tonne bull for more than $1.9 million.

“Thai people were once close to agriculture and buffaloes, but our current lifestyle has taken us away from them,” Jintanat Limtongkul, Ko’s owner, told reporters at government headquarters.

He has pledged to bring four giant buffaloes to meet tourists at Khao San Road, Bangkok’s nightlife hotspot, next month for Songkran.

During this party which celebrates the Thai New Year, thousands of revelers take to the streets and engage in giant water gun fights.

source site-61