Florida Zoo Welcomes Second Baby Elephant

Florida zoo welcomes second baby elephant
Lowry Park Zoo

The Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa has more big news from its elephant herd.

On July 29, a calf was born to first-time mom Matjeka, who’s 21 years old. This is the zoo’s second newborn calf in just seven months. Both babies come from an 11-member herd that was rescued from Swaziland, Africa, a decade ago.

Dad Sdudla also sired Mpumi, the calf who arrived in December.

“This month marks 10 years since the importation of 11 elephants from the Kingdom of Swaziland,” said Dr. Larry Killmar, the zoo’s VP of animal science and conservation. “The newest birth is a significant accomplishment of one of our core objectives of that importation, which was to have all of the females successfully reproduce and contribute to the sustainability of the North American managed population.”

Seven-month-old Mpumi and her mom, Mbali, stayed by Matjeka’s side during her labor, a common protective behavior that has been witnessed in the wild.

Both girls bring new DNA to the gene pool of elephants living in North America.


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