After a life of captivity, the 50-year old elephant Mara is getting prepared for her final trip to the Elephant Sanctuary Brazil, where she can enjoy her final years in freedom.
Mara was sold at only 2-years old from India to a place in Germany where elephants were distributed to circuses all over the world. After Germany, she was sent to circuses in Uruguay and Argentina.
She’s been at the Buenas Aires Eco-Park for the last years. It used to be a zoo, but it’s now eco-park. The owners want to give all the animals that are still there a good and more suitable life. Mara now lives in a small place, and they’re happy she’ll have more space at the sanctuary in Brazil.
Guillermo Wiemeyer, a veterinary doctor who works with Mara, said the team had been getting her ready for the journey, taking blood tests and cultures to ensure she could travel across borders and acclimatizing her to the mode of transport.
Wiemeyer said that Mara’s new home would give her more space with pasture land, streams, steep hills and the chance to meet other Asian elephants already living in the reserve.
Mara’s trip will take almost a week in an overland convey, during which time she will be housed in a huge box and accompanied by care-takers to look after her safety.
Scott Blais, CEO of Global Sanctuary for Elephants, is living in Brazil for the creation of Elephant Sanctuary Brazil, the first and only elephant sanctuary in Latin America. He went to visit Mara before she’ll travel and says she’s doing incredible. He’s amazed by her strength and love for humans after everything she’s been through.
Listen to the interview with Scott Blais, CEO of Global Sanctuary for Elephants:
Watch Mara with her veterinarian Guillermo Wiemeyer: