Brazos, who was ʙᴏʀɴ on October 21, became the fourth Asian elephant to be ʙᴏʀɴ at the zoo since 1986. A wide-eyed baby elephant was caught on camera as it spent its day playing with bubbles in its enclosure at the Fort Worth Zoo. The Fort Worth Zoo on Friday released heartwarming footage showing nearly 10-month-old baby elephant Brazos playing with the foam for the first time.
He was recorded opening his mouth and waving his trunk as the wave of bubbles came his way, before chasing them moments later. At one point, he was even spotted in front of a bubble machine with his mouth wide open, trying to sᴡᴀʟʟᴏᴡ bubbles that came his way.
Since establishing its elephant ʙʀᴇᴇᴅɪɴɢ program in 1986, the Fort Worth Zoo has been at the forefront of preserving the species. The zoo itself, which bears the slogan stating that it is the “world’s largest,” was previously known as USA Today’s Zoo Rated #1 in America in 2020.
“Conservation is a set of management plans, opportunities and strategies put in place to ʀᴇʟɪᴇᴠᴇ pressure on ᴇɴᴅᴀɴɢᴇʀᴇᴅ species,” Victoria Bennett, associate professor of environmental sciences at Texas Christian University, told TCU 360. “Conservation is an important part of zoos as they are a source of ɢᴇɴᴇᴛɪᴄ diversity and conserve biodiversity.”
In April, the zoo will open a new enclosure for its eight elephants, consisting of four ᴍᴀʟᴇs and four ꜰᴇᴍᴀʟᴇs. It’s called Elephant Springs and includes several green spaces and different surfaces to roam around in, as well as a brand new waterhole to drink and swim from. In April, the zoo opened a new $32 million enclosure to give the elephants more space to roam
The Fort Worth Zoo is home to eight Asian elephants, four ᴍᴀʟᴇs and four ꜰᴇᴍᴀʟᴇs, making it the world leader in elephant conservation. Pictured: Brazos with other Asian elephants in their enclosure at the Fort Worth Zoo. The project was funded with $32 million as the zoo maintains its commitment to be a leader in elephant conservation.
First listed as an ᴇɴᴅᴀɴɢᴇʀᴇᴅ species by the US Fish & Wɪʟᴅʟɪꜰᴇ Service in 1976, Asian elephant populations have declined by about 50 percent over the past 75 years, reports National Geographic. It is believed that there are only between 20,000 and 40,000 Asian elephants roaming freely in the world.
Hᴜɴᴛᴇʀs kill male Asian elephants in particular for their ivory tusks, as ꜰᴇᴍᴀʟᴇs have none. The main ᴛʜʀᴇᴀᴛs to the species are habitat loss, group division and ᴅᴇɢʀᴀᴅᴀᴛɪᴏɴ.