Arun, the supercute elephant baby is the Budapest Zoo’s most popular animal now. He was born on 8th November, as the second calf of the Budapest Zoo’s breeding pair Angele & Assam. Read here the chief vet’s and the curator’s short summary on the birth!

On the dawn of 8th November 2018, a baby Asiatic elephant was born in Budapest Zoo & Botanical Garden. He is a male calf, and he has been named Arun (Sanskrit for dawn) following a public vote. We have already published a short film on Arun’s birth and his first steps. Now you can read here a short summary on the birth by the Budapest Zoo’s chief veterinarian Endre Sós, and the curator István Vidákovits.

There is no need for a zoo veterinarian

Expectations were high. Angele’s second parturition was still a big event at the Budapest Zoo, as (apart from her previous delivery in 2013) the last baby elephant was born in 1961 in the Budapest Zoo’s institution. In February, 2013 when Asha (Angele’s previous female calf) was born there was a real need for zoo vets. The baby (though she had a suckling reflex) did not want to suckle – first was attracted by a metal door, later did not find the teats. Intensive follow-up and constant monitoring (including standing sedation for the mother and feeding via a stomach tube for the calf) resulted a successful outcome and Asha’s mother-rearing.

Photo: Zoltán Bagosi/Budapest Zoo
Photo: MTI

But this time the question still remained: would be there a need to repeat the 50 hours long nightmare or Mother Nature (and especially Mother Angele and her calf) will do the job themselves? Writting this short summary what had happened during the previous weeks we are lucky to say the latter scenario took place. The night watches started on the 23rd of October, when the person in duty had the task to check the CCTV cameras of the elephant house in every 2 hours during the night. This was done from an operating room, no to disturb the animals.

During the morning hours of the 8th of November the birth took place uneventfully, within minutes. The next day was spent with careful watching to make sure whether the healthy, newborn male calf is suckling. According to the Budapest Zoo’s observations we were sure that things were on the right track, and everybody did (meaning of elephants of course) what was needed. So thankfully, there was no need for a zoo vet this time….

Photo: Budapest Zoo

Source: Press release –

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