Sunday, September 06, 2009

....Welcome, Baby Elephant!....

The Albuquerque BioPark's Zoo joyfully welcomes a female Asian elephant calf born at 1:43am on Wednesday, September 2, 2009. The newborn tipped the scales at a whopping 318 pounds! This calf is the second elephant born at the Zoo and her mother, Rozie, was the first.

“Mother and calf are doing well,” stated BioPark Director Rick Janser.

To allow time for bonding, mother Rozie and her yet-to-be-named calf will stay together behind the scenes. Staff will continue 24-hour watches to monitor their interactions. BioPark visitors cannot see the baby elephant yet, but we will announce when the calf ventures out into the elephant yard.

First-time mother Rozie is doing well. Zoo staff carefully monitored her health throughout the pregnancy and conducted 24-hour watches with the help of Zoo volunteers during the last few weeks.

Rozie was born at the Rio Grande Zoo on November 8, 1992. Her mother, Alice, and father, Ranchipur of the San Diego Zoo, have no other living offspring.

When Rozie and her calf have formed a strong bond, the pair will be introduced to the Zoo’s other female elephants: grandmother Alice and "auntie" Irene.

This young calf is the result of artificial insemination with sperm from three donors. The father is not yet known, but blood samples have been collected for a DNA test. Results will be posted when available.

In the wild, male elephants are not part of the matriarchal herd after they reach maturity. They live in bachelor herds or on their own. They interact with females only to mate.

Rozie's pregnancy was recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums' Species Survival Plan for Asian elephants. Because Rozie has no siblings, she is genetically unique. Her calf adds to the diversity and strength of the North American population of Asian elephants.

The ABQ BioPark is an accredited member of AZA and a designated Elephant Breeding Facility. The AZA strives to maintain a self-sustaining population of the endangered elephants in North America.

The Albuquerque Biological Park iis committed to supporting elephant conservation both at home and abroad, and we strive to

Provide excellent care for the BioPark's elephants
Connect BioPark visitors to our natural world
Educate visitors about threats to wild elephants
Promote conservation through special events and activities
Support elephant conservation efforts around the world
In 2009, the ABQ BioPark provided $10,000 of privately-raised revenue to support field projects in Asia and Africa through the International Elephant Foundation.


dpowhitetiger said...

Please update us on the DNA father results....Enjoyed your posting..