Our land expansion is complete.
The elephants now have unrestricted
access to the entire 2,700 acres of natural-habitat
which has been
doubled-fenced for their privacy and protection.
The new Asian habitat
is 2200 acres, the African habitat is 300
acres, and the Quarantine facility is 200
| PROJECT COST $10,730,000
|222 acres of pasture and woods w/residence acquisition
and construction completed
|Small quarantine barn construction
|Asian elephant barn and office construction
|Quarantine facility fencing construction
acres wooded land acquisition
acres with 25-acre lake acquisition
security construction completed
barn & facilities acquisition
and construction completed
|New Asian Barn construction
Since the arrival of our first Asian
elephant in 1995, The Elephant Sanctuary
has led the world in the quest for
providing a true natural habitat refuge
for sick and needy captive elephants.
Since our inception we have had many
We appreciate the opportunity to introduce you to The Elephant
Sanctuary and enlist your support for our on-going
The Sanctuary opened its doors to Asian elephants in the Spring
of 1995. The facilities consisted of
one small barn and 40 fenced acres.
Over the next five years the
expansion included a new 9000-square-foot
elephant house and 200 acres of fenced habitat. During
this time seven needy elephants found permanent
refuge at the Sanctuary.
In January of 2004 the Sanctuary opened a 300-acre
African elephant facility and
welcomed our first three African elephants .
The remaining land, all 2440 acres,
will become the heart and soul of
our new expanded Asian elephant habitat.
In honor of its new usage, this land
has been dubbed Asian Elephant Country.
The expanded Asian habitat will accommodate
our rapidly growing herd of Asian
elephants which as of February 2006
numbered 16 females, ages 32 through
In September 2005 we completed
construction of our expanded
Asian elephant facility which includes a 17,000 square
foot state-of-the-art elephant house
and 2200 acres of habitat with a 25-acre
spring-fed lake. In January 2006, the
resident herd migrated to their new
possible the rescue
of the Hawthorn elephants.
The completion of the 20 mile fencing
project to enclose the entire 2700 acres coincided with the completion
of the new Asian elephant house. This new elephant house and secured
habitat increases our holding capacity and gives all resident
Asian elephants access to more than 2400 acres.
If you would like to contribute towards our expansion project,
select one or more of the links below:
|New Asian Elephant House
Construction completed Sept. 2005
|Our Wish List Page
needed items have been listed to help us with our programs.
About the Sanctuary
The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, founded in 1995, is the nation's largest
natural habitat refuge specifically developed to provide a haven for old, sick
or needy elephants retired from circuses and zoos. Since inception the Sanctuary
has rescued numerous Asian and African elephants living in deprived environments
throughout North America. The Elephant Sanctuary encompasses 2700 acres of old-growth
forest and pasture, springs, ponds, streams and a 25-acre lake on the outskirts
of Hohenwald, Tennessee—85 miles Southwest of Nashville.
Our primary objective is to provide a spacious and rich natural environment in which our elephants can fully exercise their sensitive, intense, socially gregarious, complex and exceedingly intelligent natures.
The Elephant Sanctuary also focuses on research and education. We
encourage non-invasive research intended to contribute to the conservation
of this endangered species in the wild. In July 2001, Katy Payne
and a team of scientists collected data on our elephants' auditory
signals and footfalls to further her groundbreaking work on elephant
communication. Education about elephants and the crisis they face
is a daily event at The Elephant Sanctuary.
Returning captive elephants to the wild is not an option. Accordingly, it is our responsibility to provide them a life of peace and relative freedom until they die. When we do that and provide a setting that permits quality scientific research that contributes to the survival of their counterparts in the wild, The Elephant Sanctuary will truly accomplish its mission.
African Elephant Habitat Expansion
New African Elephant Barn
12/13/03: Construction Update
The hydronic floor heat has been installed, the concrete floors poured, the keeper area is framed and the plumbing and electric is nearly finished. The translucent walls are mesmerizing. Daylight as well as the moon’s illumination flows into the elephant house, creating a warm and comforting effect, something the elephants will definitely benefit from.
View Slide Show
Tange, Zula and Flora are ready and waiting to begin their new life at the Sanctuary. Luckily for us they possess mega amounts of patience. I cannot say the same for the Sanctuary staff and others who are anticipating this monumental move. The Sanctuary staff has worked diligently to insure that the construction project move forward at a reasonable pace but weather conditions and unforeseen delays are to be expected. Due to these delays it is unreasonable to expect that the elephant will arrive before the end of the year, as we had hoped. We are now shooting for a January 1 completion date with elephants arriving soon after.
11/12/03: Construction Update
Construction is behind schedule but that is to be expected with such a unique building project. Volunteers are coming in on weekends to paint the pipe and inside walls while the contractor works during the week to complete the project.
9/15/03: Construction Update
Due to an exceptionally wet Spring and Summer, construction of the African elephant barn was delayed by several weeks. Our target completion date is still this Fall but more likely November instead of September as we had hoped.
Once the torrential rains subsided and the site work was complete, the work crews wasted no time pouring the footers and erecting this environmentally conscious—elephant friendly barn, we call the Ele Eco-Barn.
Laying out the site
Inside walls going up
Framing going up
As it will look..
A perfect combination of function and ingenuity
Architect Cary Dunn spent hours designing the perfect combination
of function and ingenuity. This building
is designed to conserve precious natural resources while providing
a functional and ele-friendly environment. Two huge plastic cisterns
collect and store rain water for the facility's endless water needs
while the polycarbonate wall panels, which allow natural sun light
in, make the elephants feel like they are outside year round.
The interior concrete walls are under construction and the concrete slab around the interior of the building is poured and is curing. Many of the steel corral post have been set and the building's steel frame has been erected.
Update 9/19/03: The metal ceiling and roof are almost complete and framing has begun for the wall panels. The overhead doors are being installed which will make way for the plumbers and electricians.
Barn ceiling nears completion
and the roof goes on
Roof is on
Another view of barn with finished roof
|The five-ton hoist and crane system is installed. This piece of
equipment serves ONE single purpose;
to lift an elephant that is down and cannot get to her feet. The hoist
is attached to a crane which rides in a track attached to the ceiling
of the barn. This track runs the entire length of the barn so that
every inch of the barn is accessible. Although this is one tool that
no elephant barn should be without, it became the target of cost trimming.
A single item with a price tag of $33,500, that may, if we are lucky, never be used, was an easy target for dismissal. After strenuous resistance from Scott and Carol, the Sanctuary co-founders, everyone involved understood why the hoist system was one line item that would not be trimmed.
|The hoist and hook have been installed
|The corral pipes leading from the barn have been set and the concrete poured. The overhead electric doors are hung and the motors are being installed.
polycarbonate wall panels are being installed. This wall system
takes more time to erect than conventional wall systems but the
benefits outweigh the added cost. This wall system provides the
benefit of allowing natural light inside the barn as well as
the health benefit of UV light.