06 March 2013

South Africa: Elephant to be released into the wild after 23 years in captivity

update (03 May 2013): Conservation Global, a South African educational, research and awareness organisation, was actively involved in reintroducing Thandora back into the wild at Gondwana Game Reserve in the Western Cape. Check their video! Kudos Conservation Global!

update (13 March 2013): Check Thandora's diary for photos and more! [more]

update (07 March 2013): Gondwana Game Reserve has uploaded some photos of Thandora's relocation to their facebook page!

Thandora, a female elephant that has been in captivity for 23 years, will soon be released back into the wild. Her partner elephant for many years recently died and zoo officals in Bloemfontein decided not to keep the widowed elephant, but to free her. Thandora, aged 27 years, got relocated from the Zoo in Bloemfontein to the Gondwana Game Reserve in the Western Cape on 05 March 2013. Due to her captivity, Thandora is currently not in the best shape so that keeping up with the herd of elephants in the Gondwana Game Reserve could be potentially life threatening for her. Thandora will therefore spend some time in a special holding boma and will embark on a rehabilitation program including both diet and exercise before she is getting released into the reserve. Experts reckon that it could take between six to eight weeks for her to adjust to the programme. All the best, Thandora!
The Gondwana Game Reserve is a 11,000-hectares private game reserve in South Africa's Western Cape. The malaria-free reserve is situated about 25 minutes outside of Mossel Bay and a mere four hours drive from Cape Town. Gondwana Game Reserve is the only fynbos reserve in the world with free roaming big five game as well as endangered species like the Cape Mountain Zebra, Black Rhinoceros and Black Harrier among many others.

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