Omaha Zoo’s elephant calves celebrate first birthdays

Young elephants at the Omaha Zoo celebrate their first birthdays
Published: Jan. 21, 2023 at 4:03 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - It was a big party down at the Henry Doorly Zoo Saturday.

The youngest elephants, Eugenia and Sonny, celebrated their first birthdays.

They were treated to birthday cake boxes made out of cardboard and paper mache and filled with hay and produce.

The young calves were born just three weeks apart last year.

“It’s been amazing having the two of them together and around the same age,” says elephant keeper Madeleine Mullen. They love playing together, that’s their favorite activity. They have grown immensely. Eugenia was about 181 lbs at a week old, Sonny was around 200 lbs at a week old. Now Eugenia is 730 lbs and Sonny is around 800 lbs.”

Kiki is Eugenia’s mom and Claire is Sonny’s mom, but they share Callee as their father.

“They’re both babies but they look similar already, but I think Eugenia is going to take after Kiki in the face a little bit and Sonny has Callee’s eyes,” says Mullen.

The Zoo is also expecting two more calves to be born; one in February and the other in August. The Omaha Zoo has one of the largest African Elephant herds in the country.

“African Elephants were recently classified as endangered species in the last year, so it’s been really fantastic to be contributing to the worldwide population, also to the zoo’s population. The species survival plan is really emphasizing elephants who are on the ground, so we’re really excited to be contributing four babies within two years,” says Mullen.