Minnesota Zoo Mourns Loss of Dolphin Calf
Apple Valley, MN – February 7, 2012: The Minnesota Zoo is mourning the loss of its female dolphin calf “Taijah” who passed away last night after a sudden and acute illness.
The Minnesota Zoo's marine mammal staff and veterinarians had been working around the clock to monitor and treat Taijah after she showed signs of severe illness early on Monday morning. An ultrasound performed that day showed fluid in the stomach, and she was immediately put on medication and seemed to be stable until late Monday evening.
“This is a very sad day at the Minnesota Zoo,” said the Zoo’s Director of Biological Programs Kevin Willis. “Known for her spunky personality and playful antics, Taijah was a favorite among staff and guests alike. She was a bright spot in anyone’s day.”
Taijah, born in 2010, was the calf of 24-year-old “Allie,” an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin who has been at the Zoo since 2008, and “Semo,” age 48. Semo is currently the oldest dolphin in human care. Taijah was born as part of a cooperative breeding program designed to increase the size and genetic diversity of the population.
A necropsy (animal autopsy) will be performed today to determine the cause of death.
The Minnesota Zoo is located in Apple Valley, just minutes south of Mall of America. For more information, call 952.431.9500 or visit mnzoo.org. The Minnesota Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and an institutional member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).