Watertown, N.Y. (September 27, 2017)— The American Elk herd at the New York State Zoo at Thompson Park welcomed four new members earlier this month, tripling its population. A pair of adult females and their two offspring were successfully integrated into the group in early September. The new elk are part of an initiative to strengthen the Zoo’s existing herd.
The New York State Zoo at Thompson Park makes it a priority to support populations of native species that have become threatened or extinct in New York State. Elk herds had been documented throughout New York State prior to European settlement, however there are no longer any sustained wild populations. The last known Elk within state boarders were hunted in the mid to late 1800’s. Since their local extinction, authorities have tried twice to reintroduce a wild population, only to have their herds diminished again.
“Elk are a prime example of the stunning natural history of New York State” says Zoo Director, Lesley Clark. “With the help and support of Krafft Cleaning Service, we’re able to sustain our herd here at the zoo. It’s important to have these animals here to remind us of the power and importance of wildlife conservation.”
Previous to the arrival of the newest elk, the zoo was home to a mother and son pair. Rosie (25) and her son, Aspen (12). The four newcomers are adjusting better than anticipated and have begun regular interactions with both Rosie and Aspen.
With the new elk additions, Krafft Cleaning Service has committed to another three year sponsorship agreement for the zoo’s growing elk exhibit. “Justin of Krafft Cleaning Service has shown amazing support to the zoo and our mission throughout the years” says Clark. “His promise of support is an indication that the zoo is continuing to develop in a great way.”
The new elk can be seen at the zoo any time during normal zoo hours. To show appreciation to Krafft Cleaning Service for their support, Krafft will receive naming rights to the two adult female elk. The Zoo plans to host a naming contest for the public to aid in naming the two calves.
For information about the New York State Zoo at Thompson Park, visit www.nyzoo.org or call (315) 782-6180.