Behind-the-Scenes with Elephants

Have you ever wondered what the elephants are doing when they’re out of view in Expedition Tanzania? Our elephant keeper team conducts multiple training sessions per day with the elephants, and some of these take place at a special training area behind-the-scenes. Here, elephant keepers can work closely with the animals through a protective barrier.

In this video, Elephant Manager Sue works with Nandi, the elephant calf born August 20, 2014, while Keeper Katy works with elephant mom Semba. Nandi’s training started when she was just a few months old; the behaviors she’s learning now are simple, but as she gets older they will be built into more complex behaviors that will help us take better care of her. For now, it’s most important she trusts her keepers and understands that she can choose to participate in training, or not. She has learned quickly, however, that when she decides to interact with her keeper, she gets treats…and lots of love.