On Friday, 27 March, India’s gift to the US, Ambika the elephant, was put down at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington. Ambika was born in India in 1948 and happened to be the third oldest Asian elephant in North America. She was given to the US in 1961 as a present after having worked as a logging elephant in India up until 1961.
Beloved Ambika, eldest member of our Asian elephant herd, has died at 72 y.o. It’s impossible to quantify the millions of people she inspired to care about conservation in her 59 yrs. at the Zoo. All who knew Ambika loved her. We miss her dearly. More: https://t.co/LP00fGtcxY. pic.twitter.com/YSEDUfyNNk— National Zoo (@NationalZoo) March 28, 2020
The National Zoo tweeted on the day she was euthanised, that they were to miss her dearly.
They tweeted about how “It’s impossible to quantify the millions of people she inspired to care about conservation in her 59 yrs.”
The zoo staff members were extremely close to her. One member in a video about her, said, “She’s (Ambika) family. She’s kind of the glue that holds it all together here.”
Unfortunately, Ambika was laid to rest due to her recent and irreversible decline in health. Despite having gone through treatment for osteoarthritis when she was in her late 60’s, Ambika’s condition had worsened and became untreatable after a point. Looking at her pain, the zookeepers thought it was best to put her to sleep. Twitter users also expressed their sadness over her demise.
We cannot condone the decades-long captivity of this Asian elephant @NationalZoo. It's 2020. Come into this century & retire Shanthi, Boze and the 3 Calgary elephants. A concrete box is not inspiring, it cannot meet elephant' needs. Let Ambika's death mean something.#RIPAmbika https://t.co/1Krp3efUwy— Friends of Ruth & Emily (@RetireRuthEmBPZ) March 30, 2020
I’ve had the pleasure seeing her. Rest in paradise Ambika https://t.co/fMFvwjUqnK— Rebecca Hollister (@rhollister2036) March 29, 2020
#WildEarth Longtime followers of the National Zoo are mourning the loss of 59-year resident Ambika. The Grand Dame of the National Zoo lived to 72 and was an icon for conservation and elephant care. One of the elephants I grew up visiting https://t.co/RJvjW7UfKn— Michael Fleetwood (@MichaeFleetwood) March 29, 2020
Rest In Peace sweet Ambika. She was one of the oldest elephants in the world. She lived an amazing life at the zoo. It was such an honor to be able to meet her. Rest In Peace sweet girl. https://t.co/3fQMTixZCU— Ethan Fine (@EthanNotFine) March 28, 2020
What a life she led. So many memories of days at the zoo when my son ranked Ambika, Happy the hippo, and Keiko the orangutan as some of his dearest friends. Years later, they remain a big part of why he wants to study wildlife biology in college. https://t.co/QCrsRpbsDO— Martha McIntosh (@marthamcindc) March 28, 2020
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