News & Media
April 24, 2008 New Elephant Observation Area
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
NEW OBSERVATION AREA GETS
The Phoenix Zoo is unveiling a new elephant observation area that will present ground level viewing of the Zoo's three Asian elephants. The viewing area will also provide for more keeper and guest interactions as keepers work with the elephants, and it gives the animals another view of what's happening around their environment.
Zoo staff removed a 40-foot section of the tall moat wall that surrounds the elephant exhibit, and replaced the steel rails with cable to provide the ground level viewing of the elephants. The new viewing area is about 35 feet-wide and has about a 1, 000 square foot concrete standing area. Four protected contact panels were installed to allow keepers to perform husbandry activities in the viewing area in a safe environment. The panels weigh about 2, 000 pounds each.
"This new elephant viewing area will allow these amazing and intelligent animals the opportunity to see Zoo guests 'face to face' as opposed to looking down on them as they do in other areas of the exhibit, " said Bert Castro, Phoenix Zoo president and CEO. "It's also an important part of our plan to remodel and renew the Phoenix Zoo to meet today's standards for hosting and caring for wildlife."
Funding for the new elephant viewing area was made possible by the E. Blois Du Bois Foundation, with additional financial support from the Aaron Gregory Hagan Senter Memorial and the Wildest Club in Town.