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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Pakistan’s Last Female African Elephant to Be Relocated from Karachi Zoo

The condition of Madhubala, the last female African elephant in Pakistan, remains a growing concern as she endures solitary confinement in a small enclosure at Karachi Zoo.

International animal welfare organization FOUR PAWS has initiated efforts to relocate Madhubala from Karachi Zoo to Safari Park, where she will join fellow elephants Sonia and Malika. A training session has been organized to prepare her for the transition, which will involve transporting her to Safari Park in a crate.

The crate training consists of four steps and employs only positive reinforcement. It not only serves as a necessary preparation for transport but also offers crucial enrichment for Madhubala. The organization anticipates removing her from her distressing living conditions and reuniting her with Malika and Sonia at Safari Park soon.

Madhubala’s physical condition remains good, but her extended solitary confinement has had a profound impact on her mental health, leading to aggressive behaviors and her use of a car tire as a coping mechanism. After the death of Noor Jehan and the subsequent risks to Madhubala’s health, the city administration had announced plans for her relocation to Safari Park. However, these plans faced delays and have yet to be executed.

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Madhubala’s new home is designed to be significantly larger than her current one, providing her with a pool, enrichments, and proper care management. Her current situation, marked by the loss of her long-time partner Noor Jehan in April, has taken a severe toll on her mental well-being.


FOUR PAWS has been working tirelessly to secure Madhubala’s future and provide her with the companionship and appropriate living conditions she desperately needs. As mission leader Dr. Amir Khalil states, “We are more than ready to finally proceed with our plans for the relocation of Madhubala. What we need is a formal confirmation and an invitation by the Mayor of Karachi, Murtaza Wahab, so our team of experts can travel back to Pakistan as soon as possible.

The urgency is eminent as she is in a pivotal state at the moment. Although physically healthy to the point that she can be relocated, her mental state worsens every day. Elephants are very social animals. They need the company of fellow creatures.” It’s a race against time to bring an end to Madhubala’s suffering and reunite her with her elephant companions.