Did you know? African elephant edition

September 14, 2017

Elephant Day returns to Seneca Park Zoo this Saturday, September 16th, and we’re gearing up for the event by sharing some fun facts about African elephants and the four that call the Zoo home.

On Saturday, guests will have the opportunity to see the elephants receive special enrichment items, get a bath or health check, go through a training session, and even participate in a watermelon eating contest against younger Zoo visitors! Learn about each individual elephant at the Zoo, and chat with our dedicated keepers to find out how they are cared for. We hope that when you leave, you will have a greater appreciation for all elephants and be inspired to act on behalf of their conservation.

Did you know…

• Seneca Park Zoo is the only zoo in New York to have African elephants – their names are Moki, Chana, Genny C and Lilac.

• All of the elephants respond to, and understand, over 50 verbal commands.

• Elephants can sleep standing up or lying down. An elephant is napping if they have their trunks resting on the ground and their eyes closed. Elephants do need to lay down to sleep and to take that enormous amount of weight off their legs. They will lie down at night.

• Elephants communicate through smells, touch, body posture, and sounds, some that we can’t even hear. They can detect vibrations from other elephants nearby through their feet. As you observe the elephants, notice how often they touch each other with their trunks.

• With four elephants, the exhibit is always active. If you watch each elephant closely, you will notice each displays unique body language, whether raising their head or flaring their ears.

• The elephants’ favorite foods are watermelons, pumpkins, and bagels!

Moki

Born in Zimbabwe in 1982
Came to Seneca Park Zoo in 2015
Weight: 8,802 lbs.

• Moki is a thinker and a problem solver during training sessions.
• She thrives on routine.
• She enjoys swimming in the pool and sometimes even brings a tire in with her!

Chana

Born in Zimbabwe in 1982
Came to Seneca Park Zoo in 2015
Weight: 8,952 lbs.

• Chana enjoys watching the world go by.
• She is a sweet, laid-back elephant who is never in rush.
• She likes to let out trumpets when greeting the other elephants.

Genny C

Born in South Africa in 1977
Came to Seneca Park Zoo in 1979
Weight: 8,302 lbs

• Genny C is a very animated elephant. She will shake her head or body to get her handlers’ attention, and she can be quite goofy. She loves her training sessions and food.
• She always has something to say, so guests will often hear her make some sort of noise.

Lilac

Born in South Africa in 1978
Came to Seneca Park Zoo in 1979
Weight: 7,242 lbs.

• Lilac is an energetic elephant that loves to play. She’ll even stir up the other elephants to get them to play with her.
• She really enjoys touching her handlers with her trunk.