People love babies, especially baby animals. Baby-related content often gets attention online, but there’s one ultrasound video, in particular, that people are really enjoying. It’s not a typical ultrasound of a human baby, but of a baby elephant!
The Oklahoma City Zoo recently released an ultrasound video of their resident elephant, Asha. The 25-year-old Asian elephant is expecting to welcome her fourth baby into the world in February of 2022.
Asha is already eight months into her pregnancy, but still has another 14 months to go! That’s quite a gestation period. Rex, a 51-year-old bull elephant, is the father of this baby, along with two of Asha’s other babies, Achara and Kairavi.
In an interview with Bored Panda, the Oklahoma City Zoo’s Curator of Elephants and Rhinos, Rachel Emory, shared that Asha is an exceptionally gentle and patient elephant. She said, “She has raised three calves and is an excellent mother. Asha does an incredible job of allowing her calves to explore the Zoo’s elephant habitat and interact with other herd mates, while also always keeping them within her sight.”
Emory further explained that Asha also shares a special bond with her sister, an elephant named Chandra. Asha is a true family elephant and an excellent mother.
The zoo captioned the video, “A tiny trunk and little legs? This ultrasound is ultra-sweet! The Oklahoma City Zoo is thankful for 25-year-old Asha’s growing Asian elephant calf, due in February 2022.”
Zoos use ultrasounds to check on the mother and baby throughout the pregnancy, just like humans do. As they shared in the video of the ultrasound, “Mom and baby are healthy as can be.”
Oftentimes, it can be hard to tell what’s what with an ultrasound (unless you’re a technician or trained to decipher them!). But with Asha’s ultrasound, you can see the adorable baby elephant with a distinguished head, trunk, and legs!
Though usually, staff will wait to announce an elephant’s pregnancy until much further along, they were confident that Asha and her baby were healthy and thriving. Being Asha’s fourth pregnancy, the staff know that Asha is a capable mom, and really healthy in general!
As Emory shared with Bored Panda, Asha eats really well and seems to enjoy her food more than the other elephants at the zoo. They use yummy fruits and veggies as positive reinforcement during Asha’s completely voluntary training sessions and medical checkups, including her ultrasounds.
According to the IUCN Red List, Asian elephants are endangered and their numbers are only decreasing. This is primarily due to habitat loss and poaching. One goal of the Oklahoma City Zoo is to provide education surrounding the Asian elephants and to aid in conservation efforts.
Even in captivity, Asian elephants aren’t totally protected, as they can still be affected by diseases. Asha’s first baby, Malee, died of endotheliotropic herpesvirus, a disease that is known to kill young elephants in the wild.
Thankfully, her other offspring are thriving, and this new pregnancy is a glimmer of hope. People around the world are already in love with the little elephant, just from the ultrasound alone!
“Omg! That’s the cutest little trunk! Just precious,” one person wrote.
“So cute. Can’t wait to see it,” another commented.
Watch the video welcoming Asha’s last baby into the world:
How precious! Congratulations to Asha!
Make a Donation!
You contribute a general donation to the Dean Schneider Foundation! This donation will support our purpose and be used wherever it is needed the most!