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Roger Williams Park Zoo’s Elephant Zookeeper Brett Haskins gave Endangered Asian Elephants in Nepal the Ultimate Foot Care

(Updated February 6)

elephant keepers treating an Asian elephant's foot pads

Providence RI (January 9, 2024 ) Brett Haskins, a zookeeper at Roger Williams Park Zoo, recently embarked on a two-week journey to volunteer at the National Trust for Nature Conservancy’s (NTNC) Elephant Health Camp in Nepal, thanks to the generous support of the Katie Adamson Conservation Fund. This vital program provides specialized care for nearly 100 endangered Asian elephants, a species facing numerous threats to its survival.

Joining forces with fellow elephant experts from NTNC and McClure International Consulting, Brett shared his expertise in elephant foot care. This seemingly simple aspect of elephant well-being is crucial to their overall health and happiness.

Elephants, the largest land animals on Earth, rely heavily on their feet to support their immense weight and navigate diverse terrains. However, their feet are also highly sensitive and susceptible to infections and injuries if not properly maintained. Regular foot care, as Brett meticulously demonstrated to mahouts (elephant handlers) and owners at the camp, can help prevent problems, detect issues early, and ensure a lifetime of mobility and comfort for these gentle giants.

Brett’s dedication and expertise resonated deeply with the Nepali community, who often face limitations in resources and access to specialized knowledge. His hands-on training empowered them with the skills and confidence to provide their elephants with the best possible foot care, ultimately contributing to their overall well-being and longevity.

The Elephant Health Camp is more than just a medical facility; it’s a beacon of hope for the

future of Asian elephants in Nepal. By providing essential care, raising awareness, and fostering international collaboration, the camp plays a vital role in securing the survival of this endangered species for generations to come.

Brett’s journey to Nepal is a testament to the Zoo’s commitment to participate in international collaborations in the fight for wildlife conservation.

About Roger Williams Park Zoo

Roger Williams Park Zoo is Rhode Island’s number one outdoor family and tourist attraction, and a leader in conservation efforts undertaken by a zoo of its size. As leaders in conservation and animal care – we create engaging experiences that empower guests to join us in conserving wildlife and wild places. Roger Williams Park Zoo is supported and managed by the Rhode Island Zoological Society and is owned by the City of Providence.


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