Save Mali! Study Says Elephants Die Earlier in Zoos

Posted on by Ashley Fruno

Mali at the Manila ZooLast week, we told you about Mali, the Manila Zoo’s lone elephant who, thanks to a directive issued by the president of the Philippines, has a second chance at life at a sanctuary. Mali is currently confined to a very small enclosure at the decrepit Manila Zoo, which itself covers an area of only 0.055 square kilometers. Not only may the decision to transfer Mali to a sanctuary save her from years of boredom and misery, it may also save her life.

A study published in the Journal of Science states that captive elephants are often obese (Mali is severely overweight). This, coupled with stress, is the reason that many captive elephants die decades earlier than their wild counterparts. During the study, researchers looked at wild elephants in Kenya’s Ambosseli National Park, working elephants in Burmese logging camps, and elephants in zoos in Europe. The study found that on average, African elephants lived just half as long in captivity as they do in the wild.

Please take action now to ensure that Mali gets the life that she deserves in a sanctuary, and that she has the opportunity to spend many more years as she would in her natural habitat, grazing, plucking fruit and leaves from trees, taking mud baths, and spending hours a day swimming and playing in the water.

Posted by Ashley Fruno