KATE - The wise one
Born in India in 1969, Kate arrived at Blackpool Zoo in 1972.
Kate was one of the first animals to arrive at Blackpool Zoo in the 1970's when she was just three years old. Kate is a strong minded elephant, a trait which comes with age and wisdom. She's very fond of her keepers and has a strong bond with them. Kate has been known to take her time with new experiences, often waiting until she is 100% comfortable before embracing a change. Since the introduction of her new herd mates, Kate has asserted herself as a dominant elephant to be resepected.
TARA - The cheeky one
Born in 1998 at Twycross Zoo, Tara arrived at Blackpool Zoo in January 2018.
Tara is a very playful elephant. She loves nothing more than a good mud/dust/dirt bath and will take any chance to get herself wet and dirty! She is enthusiastic and inquisitive, and is often the first to try out something new. Tara was the first of our new herd to arrive, which has gave her and Kate the opportunity to get to know and become comfortable with each other before the others arrive. They are now spending more and more time with each other.
MINBU - The caring one
Born in Burma in 1985, Minbu arrived at Blackpool Zoo in March 2018.
Minbu, originally born and raised in a logging camp*, has always been the dominant female whilst living at Twycross, known as a matriarch. She has strong maternal qualities and can often be seen keeping the rest of the herd in check. She is a very social animal and absolutely loves baby elephants! She can be nervous of new situations and often is the last elephant to try something new, although she adapts well to a change in routine. Minbu doesn't care much for birds and often chases them away if they try to come near her.
NOORJAHAN - The clever one
Born in India in 1995, NoorJahan arrived at Blackpool Zoo in August 2018.
Noorjahan likes to spend more of her time away from the other elephants, other than her 5 year old calf Esha. Noorjahan is respectful of the herd's matriarch, even though she towers above Minbu in size. All elephants are clever, but Noorjahan is exceptionally intelligent.
ESHA - The playful one
Born at Twycross Zoo in 2014, Esha arrived at Blackpool Zoo in August 2018.
Esha is a very active, playful and inquisitive member of the herd. She also spends a lot of time with Minbu and does push her luck especially around food, although Minbu lets her get away with it. As the youngest in the herd, Noorjahan, Minbu and Tara all show maternal bonds with her and all three value her as the most important member of the herd.
* You might notice Minbu has a star marking on her right buttock and a series of numbers on her left. This is from her early years spent in a Burmese logging camp where such markings would have been used for identification.
Elephants are extremely complex animals, all of which are as individually different as you or I and we cannot force them to get along. Therefore when introducing them to one another, monitoring behavior is key. Our facility was designed with this in mind and several features have been incorporated to ensure a safe introductory process, ultimately resulting in a greater rate of success for their social wellbeing.~ Adam Kenyon, Head of Elephants
INTRODUCING A BULL TO THE HERD
Project Elephant Base Camp was built to house a breeding herd of Asian Elephants, and while our herd is currently an all female group, we are working with the EEP to bring an adult male elephant (known as a bull) to Blackpool. The introduction of a bull will provide the herd with stability and a sense of calm, as well as being a future father to any of the herd's offspring.
We have received a recommendation for a suitable bull from the EEP (European Endangered Species Programmes) Coordinator and are now working with the relevant collection. We hope to be welcoming a male to our herd before the end of the year.