Zoo Director Hopes To Expand Elephant Exhibit

by Rick Howlett on July 19, 2010

The director of the Louisville Zoo says he hopes the zoo can resume its breeding program that produced Scotty the Elephant.

It was just over two months ago that thtree year old Scotty died of complications from colic. Scotty was the first elephant born at the zoo and in Kentucky.

Speaking on WFPL’s State of Affairs program Monday, zoo director John Walczak said Scotty’s mother, Mikki, is a viable candidate for another pregnancy.

“We’re looking at a bunch of different options, because we want to remain committed to elephant conservation. We hope to really grow the program and someday we have plans to have a new elephant exhibit just like we’re talking about a new polar bear exhibit, so down the road we want to do more and more to try to help the species,” he said.

Walczak also said the zoo is looking at the possibility of reopening its popular miniature train ride. It’s been closed since June of last year, when it crashed, sending 22 people to the hospital.

State investigators blamed the wreck on excessive speed, an inadequate braking system and driver inexperience. The zoo was fined $37,000. Walczak says the zoo has since hired a safety consultant to inspect all of its amusements.

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