African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) at
Atlanta Zoo in United States

♂ Msholo

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SSP nr535


Species:African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana)
Sex and age:Male ♂ 34 years old
Management:Protected contact
Born:* 1989 wild
Birth place: in Mkhaya Game Reserve
Capture: 2003
Freight:Air cargo, Boeing 747
Locations - owners
Present / last location:Atlanta Zoo, in United States

Date of arrival

2019-07-24Atlanta Zoo
from San Diego Zoo Safari Park

2009-10-03San Diego Zoo Safari Park
from Lowry Park Zoo

2003-08-21Lowry Park Zoo
from Mkhaya Game Reserve

1994-00-00Mkhaya Game Reserve
from Kruger National Park

Record history
History of updates2009-01-04: Management

2009-10-05: Transfer, Text

2019-07-24: Transferred to Atlanta Zoo

2020-10-22: import year
2021-06-24: link to

Latest document update2021-06-24 13:09:35
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Msholo is a living Male ♂ African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) , located at the Atlanta Zoo, in United States.

Msholo arrived in 2019-07-24 to the Atlanta Zoo, relocated from the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, in United States.

Msholo lives together with 2 other elephants at the Atlanta Zoo:
  1. Kelly born 1983
  2. Tara born 1982

detailed list with arrival dates etc.


Msholo was born wild 1989 at Mkhaya Game Reserve, captured 2003 . and imported 2003, Air cargo, Boeing 747

Comments / pictures

Eleven elephants were imported from Mkhaya Game Reserve, one of the two protected areas for elephants in Swaziland. The San Diego Zoological Society and Lowry Park Zoo collaborated on the project to capture and import the eleven wild born elephants for a total sum of one million rand, or approximately US$132,000 ($12,000 per specimen). San Diego received 1.6 elephants and Lowry Park received 2.2, transported over the ocean by a 747 jet. The elephants were all named by Swazi game park rangers in the siSwati language.
Lowry Park's four elephants included the two bulls Msholo (pronounced um-show-lo, meaning “the one who appears from nowhere") and Sdudla (stood-luh, translating to “stout or sturdy.”) The two cows were Matjeka (muh-chay-guh, meaning “skewed tusks) and Mbali (um-bahl-ee, translating to “pretty flower.”)
Before the arrival of the four in August 2003, Lowry Park Zoo acquired Ellie, an older cow from the Knoxville Zoo to help the new Herd acclimate in their new surroundings. In October 2005, she gave birth to the first elephant in the Floridia zoo's history, impregnated via Artificial insemination by a bull from another Florida facility. Three months later in January 2006, Sdudla, was transferred to the Montgomery Zoo to start a third breeding program from the 2003 original imports. There he sired the first two elephant births in the Alabama zoo's history, a female calf born in November 2007 and a stillborn calf in August 2008 which killed the mother. In October 2009, Lowry Park Zoo sent their remaining bull Msholo to the San Diego Wild Animal Park to create a second breeding Group at the institution.

Contradictory records:

The North American Region Studbook for the African Elephant states the 2003 San Diego/Lowry Park imports were born at Kruger National Park and were brought to America from Hlane Royal National Park, the other of the two protected areas for elephants in Swaziland.

Reference list


Koehl, Dan, (2023). Msholo, African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) located at Atlanta Zoo in United States. Elephant Encyclopedia, available online retrieved 25 September 2023 at (archived at the Wayback machine)

Sources used for this article is among others:


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Categories1989 births | Born in South Africa | 2003 captures | 2003 imports | Elephants from Atlanta Zoo | United States | African savanna elephants

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