Meet our female Asian Elephant calf


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Sabai’s first birthday

Sabai celebrated his first birthday on exhibit on 2 November 2017, with some special treats prepared by our Keepers! Sabai approached his birthday treats hesitantly at first, but with a bit of encouragement from his mother, Thong Dee, and aunty, Porntip, his curiosity and playful demeanour got the better of him. Sabai had a ball breaking apart the fruit with his trunk and his feet, and tasting the giant-sized iceblocks. He was later joined by his older brother, Luk Chai, who also enjoyed the family festivities.

Keepers are pleased with Sabai’s development over the past year. On his first birthday, he weighed in at 578 kilograms, and is putting on around 10 kilograms per week! Sabai is very playful and curious, and one of his favourite pastimes is chasing the Guinea Fowl and Apostlebirds on exhibit. He loves the water and most days he enjoys a splash in the Elephant pool, and is often joined by his mother and aunty in the water too.

Visitors may notice Sabai continues to have a special bond with not only his mother, but also his aunty, Porntip. He regularly runs back and forth between the two as he plays. The Elephant herd here is very family orientated, and Porntip has always been very attentive and caring towards Sabai.

Sabai can be seen on exhibit with mother, Thong Dee and aunty, Porntip, from 10am-2pm daily. A great time to visit Sabai is 11.45am, for the daily Elephant Keeper talk.

Sabai's birth

Taronga was thrilled to announce the birth of the first Asian Elephant calf at Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo. The male calf was born at 3:50pm on Wednesday 2nd November to experienced mother Thong Dee.

The calf was officially named ‘Sabai’ meaning peaceful, happiness, relaxed or comfortable in Thai. The name was suggested by Belle Lordan of Dubbo as part of a naming competition presented by the Daily Telegraph. Keepers chose the name as the whole team felt it was fitting of his personality and demeanour, and really suited a male Elephant.

Keeper's Blog

Keeper's Blog

Thong Dee had shown signs of early labour overnight and we knew via monitoring of her bloods that the birth was getting closer...

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