Man Jai meets Bong Su

1 September 2014

The youngest member of the Asian Elephant herd has met his Dad!

The introduction went smoothly, although Man Jai was a bit wary of Bong Su, keeping a cautious distance given there is a huge difference in the size of 321kg Man Jai and Bong Su, who weighs 4870kg and is 3.9m tall.

Big sister Mali, however, was full of affection for their father and very confident in going right up to him.

Keepers were pleased with how smoothly the meeting went and predict that it won’t be long before Man Jai follows in Mali’s footsteps.

Since Man Jai was born in December, he has been in the herd with mother Dokkoon, big sister Mali, and the other cows: Kulab, Num-Oi, and Mek Kapah.

Bull elephants don’t play any role in raising calves, but they do visit herds from time to time, so Keepers judged that it was time for the two males to meet.

Asian Elephants are one of the many species of tropical wildlife rapidly losing their rainforest homes to the rapidly expanding oil palm plantations.

Zoos Victoria's Don’t Palm us Off campaign is asking for more accurate product labelling so consumers know when palm oil is used and for manufacturers to switch to oil produced without removing wildlife habitat, Certified Sustainable Palm Oil, CSPO.

ANZ is the sponsor of Trail of the Elephants, and September is ANZ Zoo Month. Zoo visitors will have the chance to win some great prizes in the #ZooMonth photography competition by sharing their photo on social media and telling @ANZAustralia (Facebook) @anz_au (Twitter and Instagram) what their favourite animal is and why. Prizes include close-up encounters at Melbourne Zoo, entry tickets, and an overnight camping experience at Taronga Zoo.