San Antonio Zoo elephant Lucky dies at 62

One of the zoo’s ‘Golden Girls’ was among the oldest elephants in the US

Lucky, the Asian elephant at the San Antonio Zoo. (San Antonio Zoo)

SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Zoo is mourning the loss of one of its own.

The zoo announced that its 62-year-old Asian elephant Lucky was euthanized by its animal care team on Wednesday morning. She had been at the San Antonio Zoo since 1962.

Lucky passed away quietly under the care of veterinarians and medical staff, the zoo said.

“Lucky will be missed by all her caretakers, visitors to the zoo, and our entire community,” the zoo said in a statement on Facebook. “Lucky had a wonderful and warm personality - she often preferred being with her keepers than with other elephants. She was known for her sweetness, appreciation of affection, and gentle demeanor.”

As one of the oldest elephants in the country, she outlived the average lifespan of an Asian elephant, which is about 47.5 years, the zoo said.

Earlier this year, Asian elephant Karen died at the age of 52. Karen and Lucky were dubbed the “Golden Girls” at the San Antonio Zoo along with the zoo’s remaining elephant, Nicole.

Because elephants are social animals, Nicole will be re-homed to live with other elephants.

Their habitat, Bahati Waters, will be used for an expansion of The Savannah, used by giraffes, a zebra, an ostrich, and other African species.

“Elephants WILL return to San Antonio Zoo in the future as part of the zoo’s planned expansion with a new, world-class elephant habitat,” the statement says. “Lucky inspired us all to love and appreciate elephants and continue fighting to save them from extinction.”

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Rebecca Salinas joined KSAT in the fall of 2019. Her skills include content management, engagement and reporting.