Baby African elephant born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom for the First Time Since 2016

African elephant

Baby African elephant born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom for the First Time Since 2016

For the first time since 2016 an African elephant was born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom! Dr. Mark Penning, Vice President Disney’s Animals, Science, & Environment, shared the news on Instagram.

Related – Kali River Rapids at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Closing for Refurbishment in January 2024

The beautiful baby elephant is backstage bonding with mom Nadirah, and she is already bringing plenty of joy to the animal care team this holiday season. And at just 218 pounds, she is absolutely adorable! African elephant births like these are carefully planned through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plan. This program helps ensure the responsible breeding of endangered animals in managed care. 

This is Nadirah’s first calf, making this birth extra special because Nadirah herself was born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 2005, making her the first second-generation calf. Since this is Nadirah’s first birth, her sister Luna was there to guide and comfort her throughout the process. The calf will soon get to meet her grandma, Donna, and her other aunt, Stella, too. It’s common for adult females in the herd to assist in raising young elephants until they are considered to be independent, typically around 8 years old. Meaning, these family bonds will only grow stronger as the calf gets older.

Nadirah became pregnant through natural breeding in early 2022, and she’s received special care from our animal care team for the entirety of her nearly 22-month pregnancy. It takes a team of dedicated cast members to care for a pregnant elephant and eventually, her newborn calf.  

Under the expert care of animal keepers, the veterinary team and scientists, mother and baby will undergo continued post-natal exams and spend several days bonding before they are ready to join the rest of the herd. During this bonding period, the elephant team is watching for the pair to share key moments like successful nursing and weight gain.

We’re so excited for new mom Nadirah and her newborn baby girl named Corra!

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Sara is a travel agent with Destinations to Travel, a Disney Earmarked agency. She lives in Alaska with her husband and 3 kids. Due to her extreme dislike of winter, she travels often to warmer destinations during the colder months. She visits the Disney parks and resorts frequently with her family and loves helping other families plan magical vacations. Contact her here for help with your vacation!
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