Now that rescuers have found the boys alive and in good condition, they are giving them high protein liquid food and antibiotics.
Dozens of local and foreign rescuers, including a team of Navy divers and several cave experts, had spent the past few days helping to locate the team, but rising and muddy waters showing no signs of receding have stymied efforts and blocked access to chambers of the cave.
Twelve boys and their football coach trapped in a Thai cave are alive, but will need to learn to dive or wait months for flooding to recede before they can get out, the army says. Several have been found and explorers have been able to descend into some, but so far it is not clear whether they lead to anywhere useful.
The boys, aged between 11 and 16, went missing with the 25-year-old after soccer practice on June 23 after they set out to explore the Tham Luang cave complex in a forest park near by the border with Myanmar.
One of the boys asks when they will get out of the cave, to which the rescuer answers: "Not today".
The soccer team and their coach were discovered after nearly 10 days trapped inside the cave. He said the primary decision is whether to try to evacuate the boys and their coach or to supply them in place.
The mothers and families of the missing boys have held prayer sessions at the entrance to the cave, where there is a shrine with a statue of the Buddha.
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Governor Narongsak Osottanakorn said the navy divers reached Pattaya Beach, but it was flooded, so they carried on for 400 metres where where they found the 13 "who were safe".
The Thai military said it was providing months' worth of food and diving lessons to the boys.
As part of the rescue effort, search parties have been lowered down shafts on the mountainside, but it was unclear what progress they had made, or exactly where they were in relation to the "Pattaya Beach" chamber.
Other efforts have focused on finding shafts on the mountainside that might serve as a back door to the blocked-off areas where the missing may be sheltering.
"Everyone is coming together to figure out the next course of action and how to bring them out as safely and as quickly as possible", Tait said.
Pumping water out of the cave hasn't solved the problem, so other teams have been looking to divert groundwater. Even if the boys were taught diving skills, taking them out of the cave would still be risky.
Water levels in the cave are expected to rise as the summer goes on, as Thailand's rainy season usually lasts from May until October. Many, many people. We're the first.
The Australian team had joined forces with 11 Chinese rescue experts, up to 32 USA forces personnel, three British divers and a British cave expert as well as rescue teams from Myanmar and Laos.