It’s a girl! Meet Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo’s first elephant calf

The first baby elephant born at the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium made its media debut on Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2022.
Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 10:26 AM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium’s African elephant calf made its media debut Wednesday morning.

The baby elephant was born Friday — a first for the Omaha zoo — to Kiki, an 18-year-old African elephant. The 21-year-old father, Callee, arrived at the zoo in 2019.

The zoo did not announce the calf’s gender and weight at that time, but shared Wednesday that the elephant — a girl — was a bit small for a baby elephant. She weighs between 175 and 200 pounds.

But the good news is that she and the herd are doing really well, zoo personnel said Wednesday. She is exploring, and the adults are very attentive to keep her out of trouble, Zoo Director Dennis Pate said Wednesday.

It was an exciting addition for Henry Doorly staff, who have been waiting for years for this.

“The staff — everybody here at the zoo — is ecstatic about this,” Pate said. “Part of the reason is you’ve got to wait 22 months for it to happen. And the patience required to follow this through — with hormone levels and baby-proofing the exhibit is — and all of the ‘What if?’ scenarios that elephant staff and veterinary staff have put together so that we could be prepared no matter what happened.”

Zoo staff are also excited to welcome a playmate for the new baby: A second African elephant calf is expected to arrive this winter as well.

Watch Wednesday’s news conference

Born Friday, Jan. 7, 2022, to Kiki, an 18-year-old African elephant, the baby elephant is a first for the Omaha zoo.

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