April 6, 2009

Ned has been demonstrating real interest in outdoor play.  With the beautiful weather he is spending long sunny days in his habitat.  One morning he literally “dropped everything” and watched a staff member play catch with Java. Ned’s body was fully involved as the ball got close to his fence, and once it got inside his fence he quickly sniffed it with his trunk and did a taste test to see if it might be food. He held it firmly in his mouth and squeezed, it squished under the pressure.  He lost interest in the ball and dropped it when a caregiver traded the ball for a piece of watermelon!  He also has been seen kicking the jolly ball and strolling with his tire, which he moves along with his back right foot. It’s a pleasure to watch Ned sample the new grass which is growing quickly. Earlier in the week he sported mud on the end of his trunk as he explored the sides of the small pond in his yard.


Divaland is bursting out with Spring fever. Last Tuesday evening there was activity all over the habitat!  Around 6:30pm Liz and Frieda were busy in the lower pond. Deb and Ron along with Minnie and Lottie were following the caregiver with the bush hog, and making quite a game out of the chase.  The ele-cam operator could not keep up with all the activity. At this writing Deb and Ron just finished a swim in the Upper Pond and are now enjoying the muddy banks.


In Asia we spent the week feeding out produce treats that were wonderfully donated to all of the ladies.  They were receiving strawberries in their morning feed, kiwis and dates alternating in their late night feed, and pineapples as a refreshing snack with their hay during the warm days.  We added celery to their 6 pm produce, a nice treat, since the local grocers had been out of corn.  We were also fully stocked with peas and mangoes, which are usually just given to Sis and Winks, but this week there was enough that all the ladies were able to partake.  So with the warm nights outside, the swimming during the day, and the sweet snacks, it was a lovely week for the ladies.


On April 25 we remember the Sanctuary Anniversary of Barbara, the Sanctuary’s second resident elephant who joined Tarra in 1996, and on April 26 we remember Tina’s 39th Birthday. Tina was the first captive born elephant to come to the Sanctuary, with Ned of course being the second.


This week Carol is in Las Vegas to participate in the Animal Care Expo sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States. Carol will be giving a presentation on what to look for when assessing the health and welfare of an elephant on exhibit and what information authorities require to file a complaint.


Bella has her very own Facebook page!  If you have a Facebook page then you will definitely want to request Bella E. Sanctuary as a friend and keep up with all of the news from Bella and her very best friend Tarra.


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