Excitement At Disney's Animal Kingdom
Yesterday, May 20th, a new female baby elephant was born at Disney's Animal Kingdom. The new baby calf which is the 5th to be born at Disney World, weighed in at 288 lbs.
The new addition now increases the herd at Disney's Animal Kingdom to 13 elephants including 8 females and 5 males.
22 Month Long Process
The proud mother elephant is named Donna. She underwent a 22 month long gestation period whereby she gained 400 pounds.
According to Jackie Ogden, Ph.D., vice president of Disney’s Animal Programs:
"Elephant births are among the most amazing and complicated processes in the animal kingdom. A team of dedicated animal professionals have worked with the expecting mother attentively throughout the course of her pregnancy. At this point, we’re optimistic for the calf’s likelihood of survival and are thrilled that both Donna and her calf are doing well."Disney At Forefront Of Elephant Care
Disney has been at the forefront of efforts to better understand and care for endangered elephants. Disney’s Animal Kingdom is part of a breeding program coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) that is focused on sustaining the elephant population in North America. AZA’s Elephant Species Survival Plan has called for a five-fold increase in African elephant reproduction efforts - using both natural and artificial breeding methods - in order to create a self-sustaining elephant population among North American zoos and wildlife centers
More Than Just A Theme Park
Disney's Animal Kingdom is far more than just a theme park. The care that the animals receive is state of the art and their staff is top notch. During your next vacation at Disney World and Disney's Animal Kingdom take some time to speak with the animal care staff and you will be amazed at all that you can learn and all that happens behind the scenes.