Nation’s Two Elephant Sanctuaries Collaborate to Provide Home for Ned,
A Captive Born Male Elephant
(San Andreas, CA & Hohenwald, Tennessee (November 20, 2008)
The nation’s two elephant sanctuaries join forces to help Ned, an emaciated captive born male elephant. Saturday, November 8, 21-year-old Ned was confiscated by the USDA for failure to comply with the Animal Welfare Act. Placed by USDA authority with The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee Ned arrived in Tennessee in a severely emaciated condition. The Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) has offered to build Ned a permanent home in their new bull elephant habitat under construction at their 2,300 acre sanctuary in San Andreas, CA.
In Tennessee, Ned is housed in his private facility complete with heated barn, large habitat and natural pond, as the USDA monitors his recovery. In a proactive response to the uncertain and deprived future of captive born male elephants, the Performing Animal Welfare Society in California is building a “first of its kind” facility for bulls, and has offered to accept Ned. After rescuing their first male elephant, captive born Nicholas, PAWS Executive Director Pat Derby stated “Taking Nicholas was our first step in a campaign to end the suffering, neglect and death that is the terrible fate of many captive bull elephants”.
Ned’s appetite appears normal; consuming hay, grain and a variety of produce. Ned is a surgically castrated male and this condition is pertinent in evaluating his permanent placement. Ned currently displays no obvious medical conditions but will remain under veterinary observation in an effort to explain his previous weight loss. “Our focus over the next many weeks will be on Ned’s recovery and weight gain,” stated Carol Buckley, Sanctuary Executive Director.
Ned was born October 10, 1987 at Busch Gardens Theme Park in Tampa, Florida. One of the few elephants born in captivity to survive into adulthood, Ned is a first generation captive born Asian elephant. His parents, Josky and Vance, both wild caught in Southeast Asia as babies, were the property of elephant trainer and circus performer, Roman Schmitt. At the time of Ned’s birth, Mr. Schmitt was the manager of the Busch Gardens’ elephant breeding program. At the age of two, Ned was sold to a circus elephant trainer named Buckles Woodcock and later performed in the Big Apple Circus. Sometime after the Big Apple Circus removed elephants from their line-up, Mr. Woodcock transferred Ned to Lance Ramos, another circus trainer and performer. It was reported that earlier this year Lance Ramos and Ned were performing with the Royal Hannaford traveling
Founded in 1984 and recognized internationally for its leadership in the protection of captive wildlife, PAWS operates three wildlife refuges, providing peaceful sanctuary for abused and abandoned captive wildlife, while promoting national and international programs designed to gain permanent protection for wildlife and habitat. PAWS is a nonprofit organization and was a founding member of The Association of Sanctuaries and is licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is approved by the California Department of Fish and Game. www.pawsweb.org.
Operating on 2,700 acres in Hohenwald, Tennessee, The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee www.elephants.com has been developed specifically to provide a place for traumatized elephants to recover from the debilitating experience of captivity. The nonprofit organization, accredited by The Association of Sanctuaries and licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, is designed specifically for old, sick or needy elephants that have been retired from zoos and circuses.
SAVE THE BULLS
When PAWS agreed to accept Nicholas, a thirteen year old bull elephant from the circus, we were faced with many challenges. Bull elephants are difficult to handle because of their incredible strength, and most facilities that house bulls maintain them in maximum security prisons under primeval conditions. We vowed we would commit all our resources and energy to helping the neglected and forgotten bull elephants hidden behind locked doors. Taking Nicholas was our first step in a campaign to end the suffering, neglect and death that is the terrible fate of many captive bull elephants.
Since 1986, PAWS has documented the tragic demise of several young bull elephants who lived in horrible pain and suffering until death provided their final release. There was no help for them, and no place to send them. We have developed a plan to provide a spacious habitat at ARK 2000 for bulls in need of a peaceful retirement. Funding is critical for fencing and barns in the Bull Elephant Habitat.
To review actual cases of Bull elephant abuse Please Click Here (viewer discretion advised)
Nicholas is the first bull elephant who will live at ARK 2000, but PAWS is currently campaigning to obtain the release of two other bulls who are in jeopardy. Please join us in our campaign by donating even a small amount-- $1, $5, $10 to: