photo from Morguefile
From Sunday 7/17/16 Dallas Morning News – Getting Their Greens by Claire Z. Cardona
This was an exceptionally interesting article. Here's my synopsis:
Dallas zookeepers are able to keep elephants happy with truckloads of greenery from city parks. In a key partnership, the keepers have access to branches and vegetation, called “browse”. Elephants and other zoo animals crave their fresh veggies. Basically every other Wednesday, keepers follow city workers around golf courses and gather the “browse”. This keeps a lot of stuff out of the landfill, and it’s cheap food for the zoo. All parties are happy.
The city is expanding the plan to almost 400 parks. Wow. Daily enrichment means healthier elephants. Apparently elm is a favorite. It’s also exercise for the elephants as they strip limbs. They are occupied and it keeps their teeth healthy too Per the article, an adult female elephant weighs between 6,000 and 10,000 pounds and eats 200 to 300 pounds of food a day. Elephants eat hay, grains, fruits and vegetables. This volume of “browse” helps immensely. Seventy other species of animals enjoy different varieties too.
Spread the word to any animal habitats, and coordinate resources. Make an elephant happy!