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By: The Elephant Sanctuary

Local Tree Trimmings to Feed The Sanctuary’s Elephants

The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee will host a Christmas tree browse collection Dec 26 - Jan 6 at The Sanctuary’s Elephant Discovery Center.

December 26 - January 6, the public can bring their Christmas trees to the Elephant Discovery Center in Downtown Hohenwald, Tenn. for the elephants at The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee. Although the elephants will remain in their habitats and won’t be present at the collection event, local residents are encouraged to donate their trees to help feed their elephant neighbors and sustain the elephant habitats’ resources.

“The purpose of this program is to not only provide the elephants with more variety to their diet but to also allow the public to donate and connect to the elephants,” said Lead Caregiver Kristy E., who helped to spearhead the program.

Elephants have large appetites. Those at The Sanctuary consume up to 150 pounds of plant material, fruits, vegetables and grain each day, approximately four to seven percent of their body weight. To provide enrichment and supplement the elephants’ decreased foraging opportunities during the fall and winter months, Caregivers supply browse—non-toxic branches and leaves from specific species of trees and shrubs, which are a part of the elephants’ regular diets.

December 26 - January 6, Tennesseans can bring their Christmas trees to the back parking lot of The Sanctuary to a designated drop off location. Visitors on the 29th, 30th, 5th, and 6th between 11am and 4pm are invited to visit the Elephant Discovery Center and talk with Sanctuary staff.

See the News Channel Five story here: http://www.newschannel5.com/news/local-news/christmas-trees-can-be-donated-to-elephants

All donated Christmas trees must never have been sprayed or treated with pesticides or chemicals. Any additional tree or brush trimmings but be no older than two weeks. Approved elephant browse includes the following:

•  Abutilon (velvetleaf) • Acacia • Alnus (Alder) • Almond • Arundo Donax (Giant Cane) • Ash • Bamboo • Banana palm • Beech • Begonia • Betula (Birch) • Blackberry • Callistemon (Bottlebrush) • Camellia • Camphor Laurel • Cedar • Christmas Trees • Coprosma • Cottonwood • Crab apple • Crape Myrtle • Eleagnus (Silverberry) • Elm • Forsythia• Grapevine • Guava • Hackberry • Hazelnut • Hibiscus • Hickory • Jacaranda • Liquid amber (Sweetgum) • Magnolia • Maple (Jap, Silver, Sugar) • Marigolds • Matipo • Mimosa • Monkey apple • Moreton Bay fig • Mulberry • Nasturtium • Oak • Olive • Ox tongue • Papyrus • Pine • Pittosporum • Plane tree • Poplar • Sassafras • Sawleaf • Spruce • Strelitzia • Sugar cane • Sycamore • Tilia • Tulip • Willow

The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee, located 85 miles southwest of Nashville in Hohenwald, Tenn., provides elephants that have been retired from exhibit or performing with individualized care, the companionship of a herd, and the opportunity to live out their lives in a safe haven dedicated to their wellbeing. The non-profit Sanctuary also works to raise public awareness of the complex needs of elephants in captivity, and the crisis facing elephants in the wild. For more information, visit www.elephants.com or call (931) 796-6500. The Elephant Discovery Center is located at 27 E Main St, Hohenwald, TN 38462.

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