An African elephant calf born almost two months ago was introduced this week to visitors of the wildlife conservation park Africam Safari in the state of Puebla.
The male calf was born on May 16 after a 24-month gestation, and currently stands 80 centimeters high and weighs a healthy 110 kilograms, said the park’s director.
“This young male will be part of a worldwide recovery program through which elephants born in the park will be seen — in the future — back in Africa, in protected sites,” said Frank Carlos Camacho.
He explained that the calf was born after nine elephants were rescued five years ago in Namibia, and have been since cared for by the Puebla park’s specialized team.
“The professional team in charge has been able to keep the herd in the best condition, aiding their reproduction,” Carlos said.
While a human team monitors the calf’s development 24/7, it is also being taken care of by its mother and another cow, and that so far it has enjoyed swimming and playing in the brush.
In general, he said, the whole herd has been very protective of its new member since its birth.
The birth of the yet unnamed calf was deemed important by Carlos, because the African elephant is one of the most threatened animal species in the world.
The park director stressed that some 33,000 elephants are hunted and killed every year by poachers. Only 8% of the elephants living in the wild at the turn of the 20th century are left.
Africam Safari is home to 5,000 animals of nearly 450 species.
Source: El Universal (sp)