Ambika, the 72-year-old elephant who was gifted to the US by India in 1961 was laid to rest at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, on Friday.
She was humanely euthanized by the zoo authorities following a recent and irreversible decline in her health. The National Zoo also mourned Ambika's death and posted about her on Twitter .
Beloved Ambika, eldest member of our Asian elephant herd, has died at 72 y.o. It’s impossible to quantify the millions of people she inspired to care about conservation in her 59 yrs. at the Zoo. All who knew Ambika loved her. We miss her dearly. More: https://t.co/LP00fGtcxY. pic.twitter.com/YSEDUfyNNk— National Zoo (@NationalZoo) March 28, 2020
Born in 1948, in India, Ambika was the third oldest Asian elephant in the North America population. She was captured in the Coorg forest when she was 8-years-old and she worked as a logging elephant until 1961. She was given to the Washington zoo as a gift from the children of India.
RIP Ambika - a loving gift from India. Elderly Asian Elephant Ambika Dies at Smithsonian’s National Zoo | Smithsonian's National Zoo https://t.co/ISkmDRrgy9— Taranjit Singh Sandhu (@SandhuTaranjitS) March 28, 2020
According to News18, in a statement the zoo authorities said:
Elephant keepers have fondly reflected on Ambika's sense of humour, particularly during mealtimes, when the persnickety eater would arrange her grains to her liking before eating.
Ambika, the beloved eldest member of the Smithsonian National Zoo’s Asian elephant herd was euthanized yesterday, March 27, following a recent and irreversible decline in her health.https://t.co/FdhpHhmbz5— Smithsonian Magazine (@SmithsonianMag) March 28, 2020
Even Twitter mourned Ambika's death:
I am so sorry. May God bless Ambika. Hugs to all of you. She knew she was loved.— VALERIE VALICENTO (@VRValicento) March 28, 2020
So very sorry for your loss. What an incredible life she lead, and legacy Annika leaves. I got to see her in 2014 and she was just lovely.— chronically tired 🇨🇦 (@sarahz911) March 28, 2020
Rest in Peace Ambika ❤️🙏🏼😔— Felipe Oliveira (@ItsMeFelipeOli) March 28, 2020
She was beautiful.— Adobe Wan Kenobi (@JameyMessina) March 28, 2020
So sorry for your loss.— Lisa (@griffinlisa985) March 28, 2020
Rip Genius!!— Aatharv Raj Singh - CoRoNaWarrior (@AatharvS) March 29, 2020
rest in peace baby🥺🌸✨🦋❤️— don vito (@IndianCorleone) March 29, 2020
I'm so sad to hear this— Bette O'Connell (@bjo52) March 28, 2020
RIP, Ambika! You will be missed.