Nearly a month after their arrival, six new African elephants will go on display Wednesday at the Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium.
About 11 a.m., the elephants will be introduced to a portion of their new outdoor exhibit, which is in the far southwest corner of the zoo, south of the giraffes.
The newly constructed yard stretches east from the elephants’ overnight quarters right up to the zoo’s train tracks. The remainder of the 4-acre yard — which will include a wading pool, timed hay drops and a training station with amphitheater seating — is under construction from the tracks to the lagoon.
Dennis Pate, zoo CEO and executive director, said officials will monitor the elephants to see how they handle crowds of onlookers.
Since arriving from Swaziland on March 11, the elephants have been living inside the 29,000-square-foot elephant family quarters. They underwent a quarantine period mandated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture — initially expected to take about 30 days — and passed a veterinary examination last Thursday that cleared them from quarantine.
The entire African Grasslands, including the remainder of the elephant exhibit, is expected to be open by Memorial Day.