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18 Elephants to be relocated from Swaziland to the U.S

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by cmrButton5, 25 Sep 2015.

  1. cmrButton5

    cmrButton5 Active Member

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    Dallas Zoo, Sedgwick County Zoo and Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo have formed a conservation partnership with Swaziland. Each zoo will take a male and five females -

    Room for Rhinos | A Conservation Partnership

    Apparently the elephants would otherwise have to be culled as they are destroying the habitat for all other species, in particular the black rhino.
     
  2. ZooElephantsMan

    ZooElephantsMan Well-Known Member

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    I am shocked this hasn't spurred more conversation
     
  3. snowleopard

    snowleopard Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I've had email conversations with a couple of zoo enthusiast friends and in my opinion this is HUGE news that could have major ramifications that include the continuing presence of African Elephants in American zoos. There has been a lot of press in regards to the declining, struggling population of the species in U.S. zoos and so to import 18 wild-caught specimens (3.15) is going to be of the utmost importance in terms of maintaining and hopefully breeding captive herds. I would argue that Omaha, Sedgwick County and Dallas are a trio of zoos that are all likely amongst the dozen best zoos in the nation and to learn that they will each receive 6 new elephants is truly exciting. Two of those zoos have new exhibits for the species opening in 2016 and Giants of the Savanna in Dallas is only 5 years old. All three of the zoos have had record-breaking recent attendance and that will continue for many years to come with the help of baby elephants (hopefully) and additional exhibit plans that will see the light of day with increased revenue.
     
  4. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    I guess if the elephants would be culled otherwise, it's for the best. The Dallas Zoo has one of the best elephant exhibits around, and if the other two zoos are on the same level, then I guess it's not so bad.
     
  5. wensleydale

    wensleydale Well-Known Member

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    I'm for the import, this beats their being culled and will God willing add more diversity to the SSP African Elephant gene pool. Do we know exactly when this precious cargo will arrive? Or is it still under wraps (I wouldn't blame them if it was) and/or not completely ironed out yet? Yes I know it is by the end of the year.

    Maybe their descendants will take part in my dream project of populating the American wilderness with Elephants.
     
  6. Gulo gulo

    Gulo gulo Well-Known Member

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    If this happens and Dallas' herd goes to 1.9 will this affect the dynamic that is Giants of the Savanna that makes it truly remarkable? I have a hard time seeing 9 cows in one of the habitats mixed with the other animals that are already there. The Bull, is another interesting factor in all of this. I guess he could shift between the off-show yards or the Tembo area. With the herd possibly reproducing and growing, will this displace some of the species in Giants? Is there any room for expansion for the elephants if needed? It'll be interesting to see it pan out.
     
  7. Kifaru Bwana

    Kifaru Bwana Well-Known Member

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    It is welcome and good news both on the local population, captive-breeding as well as the general conservation perspective. Sadly, the reality in large parts of Africa remains that elephants live in an insecure world and are prone to being poached for a small portion of their bodily functions and armor. I see no wrong in that at all.

    It is to me the triumph of rationale over emotion and I sincerely do hope the rank and file elephant aficionados that seem to run for elephant sanctuaries will go extinct sooner rather than later. Their grasp of reality is seriously out of focus when conservation and survival of both African and Asiatic elephants is concerned and they contribute next to zero to much needed conservation funding for wild populations nor improved and better management of elephants in zoos globally.

    As it is, all three zoos have new state-of-the-art exhibits on the roll and each with a young group of 1.6 or 1.5 will have a reasonable chance of ensuring good breeding results for the future.

    I also hope the same may be applied in European zoos with regards to elephants, particularly the African Loxodontas - as there remains a need to have well structured social herds of young elephants to enable to breeding program to prosper and expand (as has already been achieved in Asiatics in Europe) -!

    Well done again to Henry Doorly, Dallas and Sedgwick County zoos!
     
  8. zoomaniac

    zoomaniac Well-Known Member

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    A very, very good idea.

    I wish the European zoos would do something similar, specially when you look at the sad situation for African elephants in our zoos. But it seems that to many zoodirectors here are afraid of the reactions of animal rights activists....
     
  9. gerenuk

    gerenuk Well-Known Member

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    How sad is this situation really?

    This import of African Elephants into the US, will allow the US population to reach the same level of breeding and similar demographics that currently exists in Europe.
     
  10. Kifaru Bwana

    Kifaru Bwana Well-Known Member

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    It is serious and demographics that account for that assessment.

    Main issues remain:
    A) Lack of mature breeding bulls.
    B) Lack of breed-able and young elephants cows.
     
  11. loxodontaafrica

    loxodontaafrica Well-Known Member

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    The zoo has a second elephant barn which was previously used for quarantine. That is connected to the main barn & exhibit via fenced in pathway... In theory that would be the bull holding area long-term.
    the Tembo Udango yard was designed with a bull elephant in mind from the very beginning though!

    Some of the cows in the import are not fully mature (I believe the youngest being 5-6 years of age).
    So it wouldn't be nine adult animals off the bat. I also wouldn't rule out Dallas doing what the San Diego Safari Park did in 2003... transferring its existing animals to other collections in anticipation of the import.

    But to answer your question, no, absolutely not. The species list of Giants of the Savanna is already abysmal (Giraffe, Common Zebra, Impala, & Ostrich), so it will not be further reduced.
     
  12. savethelephant

    savethelephant Well-Known Member

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    I think this is an interesting concept and am wondering if things like this will be done in the future if this "move" works out well.
    To me this sounds like a win-win both for the rhinos and for the elephants involved. However, I am a little worried of Dallas's space for what is it, 1.9 elephants? Even for the ginormous size of GOS that's a lot of elephants and don't forget the additional inhabitants.

    In the end, nonetheless, this seems like a wonderful plan and have high hopes for these animals.
     
  13. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

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    Populating the American wilderness with elephants is a dream project?
     
  14. savethelephant

    savethelephant Well-Known Member

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  15. Elephas Maximus

    Elephas Maximus Well-Known Member

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    Are those elephants small-tusked (as most of captive African bush elephants)? If so, their genes have no value, and keeping them in captivity is pointless.
     
  16. Arizona Docent

    Arizona Docent Moderator Staff Member

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    Why is everyone assuming the bull (at Dallas) will have to be separated? Reid Park Zoo keeps their bull with the rest of the herd. I believe San Diego Safari Park does the same. Perhaps keeping the bull separate is an antiquated husbandry method that needs to go?
     
  17. Zooplantman

    Zooplantman Well-Known Member

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    Bulls are usually separated only when they are in musth, which only applies to adults
     
  18. jbnbsn99

    jbnbsn99 Well-Known Member

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    That's the most absurd piece of logic I've heard.
     
  19. ZooElephantsMan

    ZooElephantsMan Well-Known Member

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    Whether or not to keep the bull seperate is dependent a lot on the bull's personality. Exhibiting elephants at zoos isn't like a one size fits all operation. Each elephant works different. Some are dominant and some are submissive. For example, If you have a small herd with submissive elephants there won't be a matriarch. OKC didn't have a matriarch of their group before Bamboo and Chai arrived.
     
  20. Gulo gulo

    Gulo gulo Well-Known Member

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    about the Dallas bull. I was thinking separation due to the habitats if mixed with the other hoofstock.