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Elephant seals in captivity.

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by loftustheraven, 30 Nov 2014.

  1. loftustheraven

    loftustheraven Member

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    Hello all! first time on this forum and with people I could discuss about zoos and animals with the same interest and passion as me! and a question that ive wanted to find out- are there any current zoos that keep southern elephant seals, particularly large males. I know that some marine parks keep walruses and Taronga zoo were in possession of two leopard seals for a while, but Casey was unfortunately put to sleep this year. And this made me think, both leopard seals and walruses are rather specialised pinnipeds so I started to think if maybe elephant seals have been kept in captivity/are currently so I thought it would be a interesting question to find out if anyone knew!
     
  2. zoogiraffe

    zoogiraffe Well-Known Member

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    This link will show you the collection that used to hold them in Europe,there are none in Europe at present and I doubt they will be again!

    ZootierlisteHomepage
     
  3. zooboy28

    zooboy28 Moderator Staff Member

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  4. loftustheraven

    loftustheraven Member

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    Oh thankyou! yeah was thinking maybe their captive care would prove problematic due to their size or possible feeding and behaviour habits. Not to mention enclosure space would have to be crucial and stocking densities would need to be fairly low in that sort of confined space.
     
  5. Bib Fortuna

    Bib Fortuna Well-Known Member

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    The main problem was the missing breeding.Altough many european zoos had several birhs , but just ONE animal could be raised to adulthood-the male"Eric", born at Antwerp and later send to Berlin, where it died very young-like most other elephant seals.Fortunately, elephant seals are now a proteted species, and it isn't allowed to import them again to europe, but, the zoos regognized that this animals can't be kept in"Captivity".Too many of them were imported and died, more were imported, they died, and so on. And just ONE was raised...I guess, around hundred or more were imported...if not more.......
     
  6. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Moderator Staff Member

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    There are elephant seals brought into captivity, usually temporarily, at the Marine Mammal Center in California. These are usually young animals that have been injured. They are rehabilitated and released. Occasionally non-releasable animals do go to American zoos. Pittsburgh Zoo has an elephant seal as of late 2014.

    http://www.pittsburghzoo.org/PressRoom/PressReleases/Zoo Rescues Injured Elephant Seal

    In the relatively recent past the San Francisco Zoo has housed recovering young elephant seals until they are releasable.

    http://www.marinemammalcenter.org/assets/pdfs/communications/pressreleasearchive/tmmcelliessfzoo.pdf
     
  7. kiang

    kiang Well-Known Member

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  8. pachyderm pro

    pachyderm pro Well-Known Member

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    All I know is that the Brookfield zoo had them in the 1930s but are long gone
     
  9. Hyak_II

    Hyak_II Well-Known Member

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    Pittsburgh Zoo houses a rescued male named Coolio.

    There was another poorly know female who lived at a research facility in California for many years, however she passed away a few years ago.
     
  10. Bib Fortuna

    Bib Fortuna Well-Known Member

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    A shame. I think, Berlin Zoo had also an elephant seal in the 1930ties, but it is also gone:( I belive, his name was"Roland".
     
  11. Tim May

    Tim May Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    According to Crandall (1964) Brookfield Zoo acquired a male northern elephant seal in the summer of 1936; this animal lived in Chicago for over three years and, very sadly, died from intestinal impaction after a visitor fed it peanuts.

    Again according to Crandall, Berlin Zoo acquired the southern elephant seal “Roland” from Hagenbecks on 10th March 1930 and it died on 26th December 1935.

    (Incidentally, I have several old Berlin Zoo postcards depicting “Roland” who was certainly a very impressive animal.)

    Finally, another snippet of information from Crandall that may be of interest:-

    The first elephant seals at Bronx Zoo arrived there in 1957. They were previously housed in the New York Aquarium with the walrus “Olaf”; unfortunately the elephant seals kept biting "Olaf" so were transferred to the zoo to prevent their “persistent annoyance” of the walrus.
     
  12. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    the first elephant seal at Brookfield came from the private zoo of George F. Getz in Michigan - a huge collection of animals were gifted from Getz's zoo to the yet-to-be-opened Brookfield Zoo in November 1933, including 4 reptiles, 123 birds, and 143 mammals. There's a photo of it in the 2009 book "Brookfield Zoo and the Chicago Zoological Society" by Deuchler and Owens.

    There's a captioned photo of the 1936 Brookfield elephant seal here, which says it arrived at the zoo with 20 sealions: Vintage photos: Brookfield Zoo - The Doings La Grange
     
  13. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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  14. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

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    Certainly don't remember anything as impressive as that in 2014!
     
  15. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    I found a brief snippet saying the model of his head (also pictured in that link)
    is at the "Berlin Sea Museum", so maybe that was where the statue went as well.
     
  16. Tim May

    Tim May Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I first visited Berlin Zoo in 1985 and have been numerous times since then, most recently in 2014; I have never seen a life-size statue of "Roland" on any of my visits.

    I have never visited the "Berlin Sea Museum"but am tempted to check it out next time I am in Berlin.

    EDIT:- I hadn't heard of the "Berlin Sea Museum" but after googling found out that:-

    "The German Maritime Museum was founded in Bremerhaven in 1971 to replace the Museum of Marine Science in Berlin, which had been destroyed during World War II."
     
    Last edited: 9 Sep 2016
  17. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

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    There is no "Berlin Sea Museum". Roland's "death mask" is exhibited at the Maritime Museum in Stralsund in a corner on the ground floor.

    Page 23
    https://www.meeresmuseum.de/fileadm...atenschaft/140217_dmm-patenschaftskatalog.pdf

    If you want to see it anytime soon, you better hurry; the (lovely) museum is going to close next year for a complete refurbishment and re-open again in 2020/2021.

    There is no life-sized statue of Roland at Berlin Zoo.
     
  18. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    I was just coming in to post that I had tried to find the "Berlin Sea Museum" and not been able to do so.

    I'm presuming one or both of you have been to the Natural History Museum in Berlin and the statue isn't there, and same for the Friedrichsfelde Palace at the Tierpark which apparently has zoo history collections? (I found a list of the museums of Berlin on Wikipedia, in case that isn't obvious). It would be a shame if the life-size statue of Roland no longer exists.
     
  19. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

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    There never was a statue. The taxidermists Karl Kaestner and Gerhard Schröder of said Natural History Museum in Berlin created a dermoplastic model of Roland and crafted his skin onto it. This museum display was destroyed in 1944 during the Bombing of Berlin in World War II. All that is left of Roland is the bronze "death mask" at the German Maritime Museum in Stralsund, Germany.
    Entdeckung des Tages-365 Entdeckungen
     
    Last edited: 9 Sep 2016
  20. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    thanks. Helps to know German to search for things like that :D