They say good things come in threes! African Lion Safari proudly announces the birth of our newest healthy Asian elephant, the third baby to join our herd in 3 months!
“Sunita”, a healthy female calf, weighing 245lbs, was born Wednesday, November 14th after a gestation of 608 days. Sunita’s proud parents are mother Natasha and father Johnson, both of whom were born at African Lion Safari.
Sunita joins our other youngsters, Luna and Onyx, who were born in August, 2018. This marks the 21st baby elephant born at African Lion Safari since 1991.
In Sanskrit, Sunita means, “wisdom, one with good morals, good guidance, righteous, well-mannered”, and so far, this description seems to be holding true. Sunita is a precocious little elephant and has developed very quickly with the support of her family.
Sunita is currently enjoying her time with her mother as well as playing and interacting with the rest of the elephants. Luna and Onyx are very excited to have a new playmate. They encourage Sunita to explore and play, while giving mom, Natasha, a bit of a break. Being raised in a herd with calves of similar age is highly beneficial for both the mothers and for the development of the babies. Sunita thrives with the love and support of all the members of our elephant herd as well as the care provided by our elephant handlers.
African Lion Safari maintains one of the most successful conservation programmes for Asian elephants in the world and is proud to manage a very cohesive, multi-generational herd. The park connects visitors with our amazing herd of Asian elephants to increase awareness of the problems elephants face in their range countries, as well as to support conservation programmes worldwide.
Asian elephants are considered an endangered species with their population estimated to be less than 35,000 in the world. Unfortunately, their decline is due to habitat loss, human populations encroaching on the areas of which these elephants live, and the illegal trade of ivory.
Although Sunita and our herd are not currently available to the public, she will be making her debut for our 50th season this summer: May 4 – September 29, 2019.