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Tulsa Zoo Friends Members provide much-needed support for the zoo through annual memberships. Your membership supports exhibit improvements, and it also helps to provide essential items for the zoo, such as enrichment and food for animals. Your dedication to the zoo helps us continue our commitment to conservation.

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Asian Elephant
Elephas maximus

Elephants have specialized adaptations to accommodate their large size:

  • Support System: Elephants have sole pads under their toes that help carry all their weight. To make sure that there isn’t too much weight on just one foot, the pad spreads out when the weight is placed on it and then goes back to its original shape when the weight is lifted. Like the bottom of your tennis shoes, the elephants’ pads allow it to walk quietly and without slipping.
  • Carrying a Trunk: With thousands of muscles and tendons, elephants’ trunks are incredibly strong and flexible! They can carry heavy loads, like logs, or pick-up a single flower. Trunks also help them reach areas where their large bodies cannot fit. To drink, elephants use their trunks more like a cup than a like a straw. They suck the water into their trunks and then place the end of their trunk into their mouth and release the water.
  • Tons of Elephants: Elephants are the largest land mammal in the world. They can weigh as much as two vans filled with people.

Asian Elephant Fact Sheet

To learn more about elephants, visit them at the Lost Kingdom: Elephants exhibit.