Elephant research and creative care

Oregon Zoo keeper and vet staff care for elephants every day. Their observations and adaptations have led to a deeper understanding of these complex animals and important changes in elephant care that improve the lives of elephants around the world.

During the past fifty years:

  • We've pioneered practices that allow us to safely and humanely provide daily care and medical treatment, even to adult males.
  • We helped establish national elephant care standards and professional training for keepers caring for elephants at all Association of Zoos and Aquariums member facilities.
  • Our estrus cycle and hormone studies have deepened our collective understanding of elephant reproduction.
  • Discoveries from our pheromone (hormone scent) and infrasonic (low frequency sound) communication studies have been applied in Asia for proactive elephant management around developed areas, reducing human-elephant conflict.