DALLAS - The Dallas Zoo announced the death of Stumpy, a 47-year-old African elephant, in a news release Friday.
Stumpy was believed to be among the five oldest African elephants living in the United States. She was part of the zoo's matriarchal elephant family, who are affectionately called the "Golden Girls," due to their advanced ages.
Details about which age-related conditions caused her passing will not be available for several weeks following the necropsy.
"The Giants of the Savanna was designed specifically for aging elephants providing them a caring, comfortable and stimulating environment for the end stages of their lives," said Gregg Hudson, executive director of the Dallas Zoo and the Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park. "Thanks to the Savanna, these elephants were given a new home to live out their twilight years."
Stumpy came to the United States in 1967, and Dallas in 2012. She was thriving in new home with her companion of 40 years, Mama. However, her health had declined over the past two weeks, according to Dr. Lynn Kramer, the zoo's deputy director for animal conservation and science.
"Stumpy was one of the sweetest elephants ever," said elephant keeper Robbie Clark. "Her calm and gentle manner, and obvious intelligence, served her well in her role as the matriarchal leader of our elephant herd. She taught the staff a lot about elephants. We all love her and will miss her greatly."
Guests who wish to leave a note about Stumpy for Mama or the elephant keepers are welcome to post on the Dallas Zoo's Facebook page.