26-year old Moyo, the mother, gave birth to a 327-pound male elephant June 28 after 21 months gestation. 22 months is the average gestation period, and the longest of any land mammal. Both Mother and son, as yet unnamed, are reported in good condition and expected to survive.
This is the fourth elephant born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Tufani, who is Moyo’s first male calf, was born in 2003; Kianga, a female, was born in 2004; and Nadirah, the youngest female, joined the herd in 2005. All remain on the savannah at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Moyo herself came to DAK in 1997 from a zoo in Tacoma, WA after her capture in the wilds of Zimbabwe in 1983.
Having toured the facilities and met with the Animal Care team at Disney’s Animal Kingdom I can vouch for the amazing level of care they provide for the animals they supervise. The Animal Care program goes well above and beyond the AZA rules for care and breeding. So much that many of the AZA breeding program studbooks are run by DAK staff.
The full Press Release is below the cut: