Los Angeles Zoo visitors will have the chance to meet Elephants of Asia’s newest resident, Shaunzi, during this year’s World Elephant Day Celebration on August 12 and 13. This annual event includes two days of opportunities to learn about elephants and the challenges they face in the wild. Guests are welcome to explore the Zoo’s state-of-the-art Elephants of Asia exhibit and get to know its four elephant residents—Tina, Jewel, Billy, and recently arrived Shaunzi. Animal care staff will be on hand to share information about the unique needs of elephants and how the elephant team cares for them, including tours of their barn from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Other activities include an education station illustrating how elephants use their trunks as tools, another detailing African and Asian elephants’ different traits, and a third about how Zoo staff keep elephants happy and healthy through specially designed devices and activities. A “veterinary clinic” invites young guests to bring their toy elephants in for a check up that includes a certificate of health. Additional activities include conservation crafts and photo opportunities.
In addition to learning more about elephant behavior and care, guests will get insights on the threats that elephants face in the wild, what the L.A. Zoo is doing to address these challenges, and simple actions that everyone can take to help. One simple action is to “adopt” an animal through GLAZA’s ADOPT (Animals Depend On People, Too) program. Not only do ADOPT donations support daily Zoo operations, they also help fund vital field conservation programs such as Fauna and Flora Inc.’s Cambodia Elephant Conservation Group and the Biodiversity & Elephant Conservation Trust in Sri Lanka, which the Zoo has long supported. ADOPT packages begin at $35, are tax deductible, and for World Elephant Day Celebration only, include a free elephant plush.