The Elephants First Birthday at Dublin Zoo

September 8, 2015

Daily Digest

The Elephants First Birthday at Dublin Zoo


In August The Natural Confectionery Company and Dublin Zoo hosted a triple birthday celebration for Asian elephant calves Kavi, Ashoka and Samiya to mark their first birthday and I went along with Ruby and Mr. M for the festivities!

It hard to believe it’s a year now since we first heard the pitter patter of slightly larger than normal feet at the Kaziranga Forest Trail. Kavi, celebrated his first birthday on 17th July, and Ashoka will celebrate his on 19th August and Samiya will be one on 17th September.

Gerry, the Operations Manager from Dublin Zoo, gave us an insight into the life of the elephants over breakfast before we went to see the elephants have their own food. watching 12 ‘tiny’ feet run towards the elephant house as they come in for their breakfast, tails in the air and ears out in excitement, was a sight to behold and the children present squealed with excitement.

Elephants Dublin Zoo

They were then let out into their enclosure where the three calves frolicked in the mud while their parents were hosed down by Gerry.

Some interesting facts about the elephant calves’ I discovered are:

  • Kavi now weighs almost 700kg, or the weight of a fully grown dairy cow. Little brother Ashoka weighs in at 500kg while little sister Samiya is a dainty 450kg.  At birth they weighed in at 80kg, 70kg and 68kg respectively
  • All the calves are still drinking from their mothers and will do until they reach about five years of age or another calf is born. Their appetite is increasing and they have begun to enjoy solids like hay and fruit. Their favourite foods include bananas and apples. The calves all love to pile on top of one another to sleep.  Their big sister Asha, now eight years old, keeps an eye on them.  The keepers can see from their night cameras that the calves like to wake the whole elephant house in the morning by jumping on their mothers!
  • They sleep for an average of six hours a night and take regular naps during the day, particularly on hot days when they tire themselves out playing with the water
  • Kavi is a brave little bull who likes to follow his father Upali. Ashoka started off a little shyer but now that he’s getting bigger he’s challenging his brother more each day
  • Samiya enjoys spending time with her mother Dina and sister Asha but also loves to play with her brothers. She also likes chasing wild birds out of her habitat
  • All three love to wrestle and splash in the two large outdoor pools, climb on big boulders, tree stumps and sometimes their sleeping mother’s heads!
  • They are actively swimming more and more each day.  After a dip in the pool they like to roll around in the sand to dry off before enjoying some more wrestling!
  • As their confidence increases, they are learning how to use their voices more and more to communicate

The Natural Confectionery Company transformed the Zoo into an elephantastic birthday bash for the first birthday celebrations over the weekend with music, face-painting, fun and games and a whole host of fun-filled family activities.

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  4. Behind the Scenes: Dublin Horse Show
  5. Look Forward To: Summer in Dublin
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