Sadly, a 44 year old elephant named Mila died this past week at the San Diego Zoo.
Mila had a hard life. She did not get along well with her companion at the Honolulu zoo, and was put on the market.
From the San Diego Tribune:
“Mila was sold at age 4 to the Whirling Brothers Circus in New Zealand.
For the next three decades she toured the country, never seeing another elephant. (There’s only one other in all of New Zealand.) For almost that long, a group called Save Animals From Exploitation campaigned for her release.”
It wasn’t until 2013 that she moved thousands of miles from New Zealand to San Diego. After intense training and a slow introduction to the other elephants, she seemed to be thriving.
The cause of death is unknown, and her death was a surprise. She may have had a heart attack or stroke.