An elephant in captivity was found to have died forty years earlier than her expected age of death. Captivity adds stress and discomfort to an elephant’s life, shortening its span and making it very vulnerable to certain premature death and mental disorders.
According to a study published in the December, 2008 edition of Science Magazine, elephants living in captivity have a much shorter lifespan than those in the wild. This was found to be true for both Asian and African species of elephants. This study found that African elephants lived an average of 17 in captivity, compared to the average of 56 years for those living in Kenya’s Amboseli National Park. For Asian elephants, their average lifespan was 19 years compared to those living and working in Myanma Timber Enterprises (a logging camp) who lived an average of 42 years. Baby Asian elephants in captivity were also found to have a very high death rate.
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