You’re probably familiar with how a human ultrasound looks, but have you ever seen an elephant calf curled up in its mother’s womb? The Oklahoma City Zoo recently shared a video of the special moment when its resident Asian elephant, 25-year-old Asha, had an ultrasound. Asha is currently eight months pregnant, but since the average elephant’s pregnancy lasts 22 months (around 660 days), there’s still a while to go before we get to meet her baby.
Asha is expected to give birth to her fourth offspring in February 2022. The most recent ultrasound—taken by the zoo’s vet team—confirmed that both the mother and baby are “as healthy as can be.” In the video, you can just about make out the calf’s “tiny trunk and little legs” as well as its not-so-little ears.
Asha lives with six other elephants at the zoo, but she’s currently getting lots of special treatment. “Probably more than any of the zoo’s other elephants, Asha loves to eat,” says Emory, one of the staff who looks after her. “Her main diet consists of hay, grass, and tree limbs—her personal favorite.” She continues, “She also receives extra fruits and vegetables as positive reinforcement during all of her training sessions. All of these training sessions, like the ultrasound, are completely voluntary and allow us to safely and comfortably provide medical care for all of the elephants. Asha especially enjoys watermelon, cantaloupe, and bananas during these sessions.”
Check out the incredible ultrasound video below, and keep up to date with Asha’s pregnancy story on The Oklahoma City Zoo’s Facebook page.