Narrating the correlation of elephants as related to their import, groupings, breeding and transfers,
along with other elephant related topics.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Elephant Contraception

According to a news article published yesterday in California, the San Diego Zoo's female elephants "are all on contraception. The advanced age could cause complications during a pregnancy, so the decision was made to put them on contraception."

It was announced in December 2010 that Tina and Jewel, new residents to the Los Angeles Zoo, were also put on contraception if they are later to mix with the zoo's young male Asian elephant, Billy.

Does anyone have more information regarding other elephants in American (or world) zoos that are also on contraception to prevent births?

>> "Sometimes, zoos can have too much of a good thing" by Michael Stetz,, 2011-01-20

>> "Zoo Elephant Contraception" at ZooChat


  1. I am not in a position to know how widespread this practice is as yet.
    However, I think that it is going to become more prevelant, particularly with the increasing number of calves being born and the looming problem with placing some of them, particularly the bulls, in years to come.
    Whoever would have thought that, one day, there will not be enough spaces for elephants in the world's zoos?

  2. An interesting quandary, Steve.

    I am sure that would not have been a thought several decades ago, when anyone could purchase an elephant and the animals could be kept in any size enclosure - regulations were minimal if non-existent. The number of elephants we have now is a fraction of what America had previously.

    It is not that there are too many for the spaces, but rather the spaces required are much larger. As time passes we are seeing many more of these grandiose, large facilities constructed. If an institution cannot make this adjustment, elephants are phased out - less spaces available (from a different perspective of the term).

  3. As stated in the newly updated "AZA Standards for Elephant Management and Care," updated March 2011:

    3.4.4 Recommended means and duration of contraception

    Standard: There are no standards for contraception with elephants at this time.

    Explanation: Currently, there is not a need for contraception with either African or Asian elephants in human care. Contraception information is available on-line at the AZA Wildlife Contraception Center’s web site at


I eagerly anticipate associating with new individuals with an interest or history in elephants, elephant history and elephant record keeping. If you have further information regarding the animals or locations questioned in the article, please leave a comment or message me in an effort to complete their records for elephant historians.