Large Elephant Sanctuary May be Created

A 225 acre parcel of land is likely to receive approval for development as an elephant sanctuary near Fellsmere, Florida. Called the National Elephant Center it is the collaborative effort of 73 zoos, for the purpose of taking care of elephants in a natural setting. The first phase of construction could be completed in 2012, and would allow about nine elephants to live there comfortably. Eventually, additional construction will provide accommodations for about forty elephants.

The elephant center is likely to only be open to the public for visits from schools, but there won’t be high walls so hikers, bikers, and joggers should be able to see the elephants in the acreage. There is a commercial aspect to the operation, as some of the elephants will reproduce and their offspring might be used in circuses or zoos.

The idea behind such activity is then less elephants would be captured from the wild for the same uses. While the breeding aspect of the new facility is likely to upset those who feel no elephants should ever be used in circuses or zoos, capturing less from the wild may actually be somewhat of an improvement. Both African and Asian elephants will live there. In some parts of Africa elephants might become extinct due to loss of habitat, and poaching. The National Elephant Center says zoos support 85 elephant research programs, educate millions of people, and provide the majority of funding for the International Elephant Foundation. If you want to sponsor an orphaned elephant, you can do so through the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

Image Credit: National Elephant Center


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LMj Sunshine

Sounds wonderful..

LMj Sunshine

Sounds wonderful..

Abbe A.
Azaima A5 years ago

hope the elephants are treated with respect and dignity

Elaine A.
Elaine Al Meqdad5 years ago


Frans Badenhorst
Frans B5 years ago

good news???

Vanessa Wolfe
Vanessa Wolfe5 years ago

What a load of crock!!! Who are they trying to kid, this is just spin doctoring don't fall for it. If they were genuine in their concerns for elephants this facility would be used to house "the already captive and unable to rehabilitate" elephants and not produce any more. Animals in circus' should be banned period!!!!

Rachel Piche
Rachel Piche5 years ago

This is ridiculous! Any respectable zoos that "deserve" the privilege of having wild animals in their collection do NOT get animals from the wild. Circuses do though and it's costly. This is very clearly a despicable attempt at fooling the public. I hope light is shed on this issue so that the project can be seen for what it is - another way of abusing magnificent creatures.

Wild animals DO NOT belong in captivity. For some unfortunate ones though, it's the only way they can survive. Their misfortune is more often than not caused by the human animal so they deserve the utmost respect and best care possible. This does not include, in any way, taking advantage of the situation to make $$ like circuses do!!!

Michela Rebuli
Michela R5 years ago

This is not a sanctuary. This is disgusting. Zoos and especially circuses are not places for elephants or any animal. Why is this information being shared on Care 2 like it's good news. I hope this place is stopped, it's awful. Anyone who has any association with Ringling Brothers is not good.

Ans Weevers
Ans Weevers5 years ago

Thank you David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, you do good work

Nimue Pendragon

Sounds wonderful, but if Jennifer's comment is true, then it may not be the "sanctuary" people think it will be.