Home / News / EleNotes / August 15, 2011
By: The Elephant Sanctuary

August 15, 2011

This week seemed to revolve around food at the Asian Barn—not only did we have our usual local produce from the Amish Market, but we also had some volunteers stop at the International Market in Nashville to bring some goodies, and another volunteer delivered produce donated by Costco. This meant trying to shove lots of produce into one walk-in cooler all at once!

A variety like this is not only a nice thing to have in general, but the timing was great for those of our Girls that have gone through periods of poor eating recently: Misty, Sissy and to a lesser extent, Dulary. This week we had some new things to try: banana flowers (which were met with mixed reactions), fresh prunes (which Dulary loved), and Napa cabbage (which Dulary loved so much, she actually cut Misty off for her share, too). Along with these new items, we also fed some favorites; very sweet purple grapes, perfect (elephant) bite-sized watermelon, and mangoes. We are slowly working our way down to being able to walk through the cooler again, after doling out lots of watermelons and having the other barns come pick up some for our other Ladies.

After their illnesses, Sissy and Misty continue to put on weight while Dulary is maintaining her weight. We continue to explore possible reasons for their gastrointenstinal problems, and sent some samples out for more testing last week.


Deb and Ron have returned to their pattern of being up the hill in the South habitat in the mornings. Perhaps the cooler evenings have encouraged them to resume their old routine. They're not generally far out, usually right near the South gate, that, if closed, would separate the Night Yard from the Night Yard Extension. Ronnie approaches the 4-wheeler eagerly, excited for breakfast, while Debbie hangs back and roots around in the leaves and underbrush for a few more moments, as if what she's doing is much more important than her Caregiver delivering her diet and hay. It's all a farce though, as she's usually turned just slightly to watch what is happening out of the corner of her eye. Once her name is called, and the unloading of her food begins, all pretense is gone and she ambles over quickly to get her morning meal.

When it rained the other day at Phase 1, Billie decided that was all the excuse she needed to have some fun. She started out in the jungle of tall weeds… dipping, ducking and draping long weeds across her head. Next, she moved on to her ball, and then to a toy that someone had brought out from the barn, and had a great time. We are working on creating a sprinkler for Billie to play in. Her interest in toys tends to be short lived, so perhaps a sprinkler will keep her engaged longer.

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