The Memphis Zoo is home to over 4,500 different animals and 500 different species, including the oldest African elephant in North America--wow! Tyranza, or Ty as most call her, one of three female African elephants at the Memphis Zoo, will turn 54 years old in July.
African elephants are the largest land mammal in the world, reaching upwards of 15,000 pounds and 13 feet tall at their shoulders. They are primarily herbivores, believe it or not, dining mostly on hay. Ty, Asali and Gina consume almost 170 pounds of hay in one day! Pro-tip: Don’t invite an elephant over for dinner.
There are two types of elephants, African and Asian. African elephants live south of the Sahara desert and have larger heads and ears than Asian elephants. Asian elephants live in Asia and Southeast India. Only Asian males boast tusks, while male and female African elephants do.
Next time you’re at the Zoo, stop by and see these magnificent creatures in the African Veldt exhibit. Look for the elephant with two tusks and there you will have Ty. Asali, whose name means “honey” in Swahili, has a pink birthmark on one of her legs, and Gina has only one tusk.