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By: Oliver Milman

US Zoos Secretly Fly Elephants From Swaziland

The Guardian

An elephant family
Herd of bush elephants in Amboseli National Park in South Kenya

Animal rights groups decry clandestine sedation and removal of ‘the stolen 18’ as officials say drought conditions jeopardised the pachyderms’ well-being Three American zoos have pulled off an audacious clandestine operation to fly a group of elephants out of Swaziland despite a legal challenge to block the transfer, enraging conservationists who claim that removing elephants from the wild for display in zoos is cruel and outdated. The 18 elephants — three males and 15 females ranging in age from six to 25 — were sedated, loaded onto crates and placed on a large cargo plane that arrived in Swaziland on Tuesday. Pictures taken at the scene show several large crates, ostensibly for elephants, being picked up by a crane and placed onto trucks.

The elephants will be split among three zoos — the Dallas zoo, Sedgwick County zoo in Kansas and Henry Doorly zoo in Nebraska — where they will be put on exhibit and used for breeding purposes.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/09/us-zoos-secretly-fly-elephants-swaziland-dallas-kansas-nebraska

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