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Name: Pathi Harn - 'Miracle'
Location: Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo
Pathi Harn was the second Asian elephant calf to be born at Taronga Zoo. He was conceived by artificial insemination of Taronga’s female Porntip and Melbourne Zoo’s bull elephant, Bong Su.
Porntip was in labour for eight days during which it was discovered through ultrasound that Pathi Harn was upside down making it impossible for him to proceed down the birth canal. This had never been witnessed or recorded before. Towards the end of the protracted labour no signs of life from Pathi Harn were detected leading reproductive experts to conclude he had died in the womb. Remarkably, in the early hours of the 10th March 2010 Porntip managed to turn Pathi Harn into a birthing position and against all odds give birth to him at 3.27am. Pathi Harn weighed 116kg at birth and for the first 24 hours he was very fragile and required a lot of help and therapy from keepers in assisting him to walk and suckle.
Pathi Harn is playful and inquisitive but is not as confident and bold as Luk Chai, however he refuses to take a backward step in their daily sparring sessions and is quite often the instigator, energetically ensuring these sessions continue for most of the day.
Young calves like Pathi Harn are part of a program to ensure a future for elephants in Australia for generations to come. They also help to create awareness on issues threatening wild elephants and play a part in raising support and funding for conservation programs throughout Asia.