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Dubbo zoo celebrates 95kg elephant calf

AAP logoAAP 3/11/2016

Zookeepers at Dubbo's Taronga Western Plain Zoo are popping champagne as they celebrate the first elephant calf born at the zoo.

Mother Thong Dee delivered the 95kg bundle of joy in the paddock on Wednesday afternoon.

The male calf was standing on its own within 30 minutes of being born and began suckling within hours, zookeepers said.

As Dubbo Zoo prepares to celebrate its 40th anniversary in February, the birth of the calf is tremendous news for the Australasian conservation breeding program for Asian Elephants, they said.

"Thong Dee is doing a magnificent job and the successful birth is a tribute to the hard work of our keepers and veterinary staff. It's a milestone achievement in the almost 40-year history of our zoo. We couldn't be happier.

"Every birth is important as it helps to secure a future for this endangered species," said Zoo Director, Matthew Fuller.

The calf was sired by Taronga's bull, Gung, in Sydney 22 months ago before Thong Dee moved to Dubbo with three other elephants.

It's her second calf.

Dubbo Zoo will hold a competition so the public can help choose a name for the new addition.

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