14 March 2024

Night of excitement at BIOPARC Valencia for the “live” birth of a second elephant

At 02:14 this morning and after a gestation of 651 days, the happy birth of a second African elephant took place in the Valencian park.

Contained nerves, accumulated fatigue, some shocks and absolute silence from the technical team until the cameras showed the exact moment of the birth of the elephant Maja. Nail moving images in which the birth of the precious calf that took place tonight at 02:14h, after a gestation of 651 days and that has unleashed emotion.

The entire camera system deployed was necessary to guarantee non-intrusive monitoring, facilitate the birth to be completed naturally and has even allowed listening the sound of amniotic fluid when suddenly spilled. It is also essential to observe the mother's behavior and check that breeding develops correctly and has allowed us to contemplate the impressive attitude and curiosity of the rest of the herd, when each of the elephants has approached to meet the “baby”. A touching moment was the meeting with little Makena, just over a year old, with the hope of a “cousin” to play with.

The elephant Maja with her newborn calf in the indoor facilities of BIOPARC Valencia

Some impressive images of the exciting moment after which it has already been seen that the female Maja has begun elephant breeding and attention, to the enormous curiosity of the rest of the herd.

In order not to make any changes to routines, people specialized in their well-being have not accessed the interior areas until 7 in the morning. At the moment everything is developing normally and, as it is the second birth, both for the elephant herd and for the entire technical team, the actions in this new situation are more predictable. The “little elephant” shows completely innate behavior, suckling on demand and instinctively following his mother.

Newborn African elephant calf at BIOPARC Valencia

For her part, Maja has clearly expressed her surprise at the event and, after the first hesitation, she is already providing all the necessary attention. In any case, it is important to remain with all obvious caution regarding the delicacy of a newborn, even if it has a weight between 80 and 100 kg, since the first days of life are always critical.

Elephant calf in the first moments of life at BIOPARC Valencia

The animal care team shows caution, reinforcing the protocol and intense surveillance, since the evolution in the first hours and the next few days is essential.

This new birth is a second joy for BIOPARC, since it allows us to face with optimism the conservation actions promoted by the foundation. In the same way, reinforces hope for the European Endangered Species Conservation Program (EEP) in which the Valencian park participates to preserve the savannah elephant (African loxodonta).

Newborn elephant calf at BIOPARC in the indoor shelters

It should be remembered that it is an endangered species included on the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Currently BIOPARC Valencia houses a group of one male, six adult females, a calf and the newborn, who for now will remain under monitoring in the indoor facilities with its mother, while the rest of the herd can be seen in the area that it faithfully recreates. their habitats of origin.

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