Jumbo arrival: Dublin Zoo trumpets birth of baby elephant

A ZOO’S not-so-little latest arrival made his first public appearance yesterday.

The four-day-old baby elephant — who weighs in at 80kg (176lbs) — was introduced to visitors to Dublin Zoo accompanied by his mother, Yasmin.

The bouncing boy, who has not yet been named, is thriving since his delivery early on Sunday morning.

The natural birth was observed by zoo staff through several infrared cameras, with the calf walking after just 30 minutes.

The jumbo delivery is the latest addition to the facility’s growing herds.

Last May, zookeepers trumpeted the birth of Ireland’s first baby elephant and within weeks celebrated the safe delivery of its first giraffe in a decade.

Paul O’Donoghue, assistant to the director at Dublin Zoo, said all the staff are delighted.

“It’s quite extraordinary that we are now welcoming our second elephant calf at Dublin Zoo in just nine months,” he said.

“We now have a real family group representing both sexes and a variety of ages. The bonding process is great to watch.”

Mr O’Donoghue said the calf is suckling well and has been given a warm welcome by the other members of the herd — including nine-month-old Asha and her mother Bernhardine, 24.

Asha, who also weighed in at 80kg at birth, already weighs about 500kg.

The calf’s sister, four-year-old Anak, is also taking a very strong maternal role alongside their mother Yasmin, 17.

Staff added that while the herd is being very protective of the new addition, Asha is learning to adapt to her new role in the group, as she is no longer the baby.

Visitors to Dublin Zoo can see the five elephants in The Kaziranga Forest Trail.

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