seattle's woodland park zoo has lost its youngest zoo-born start attraction at the age of just 6. hansa the elephant died a few weeks a go due to an previously unknown form on herpes. read the zoos post-mortem press release here..... Woodland Park Zoo Press Release once again the issue of elephants raises the question of what exactly zoos are good for anyway... david hancocks, former woodland park director had this to say... Hansa's short life one of deprivation interestingly there is no mention of the fact that woodland park was breeding asian elephants in the presence of an african female. i would be interested to see if anyone considers this a contributing factor given what some of our english fellow forum members have said about the situation over there with africans beng a major cause of death amongst young asian elephants. in any event, i posted this just to remind anyone (who doesn't subscribe to zoonewsdigest) that this elephant debate is happening in virtually every western zoo that houses them. few zoos escape the criticism and of those that largely do, it only takes a failure such as this to reignite the debate. in my opinion, by zoos not answering to the most obvious and simplest of public expectations, then they are only shooting themselves in the foot. exhibit upgrades don't keep the public satisfyed for long when underlying issues are not really being addressed. its not hard to understand why so many people are anti-elephants-in-zoos per se, when so few zoos demonstrate an example of what people want to see. for me its not so much about wether or not they can but more a case of wether or not they do. i wish all these small city zoos would stop wasting so much bucketloads of precious money on elephants and put it to better use on something a little more productive.