Re. the loaning of elephants. I assume this is just zoo jargon, not to be interpreted in the literal sense. I’ve heard the term permanent loan used in a zoo context, which is probably more appropriate. As for the ownership of offspring, I’ve seen sample contracts re. the loan of a zoo animal for breeding, which states ownership of offspring will be split 50:50 between the receiving facility and the lending facility. If it’s an animal that typically gives birth to a single offspring, the first would be owned by the lending facility; the second by the receiving facility etc. ‘Ownership’ is essentially a null and void concept as within a breeding programme, animals are never owned per say. The most bizarre aspect of this concept is a zoo can ‘own’ many individuals of a species, despite not holding the species for very long. For example, a Temminck’s golden cat stays at a zoo for a year before being transferred to another zoo; it gives birth to 10 kittens over the next decade, five of which are then owned by a zoo that only held the species for a year.