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Governor Sonny Perdue Visits Zoo Atlanta to Highlight Conservation

Monday, December 19, 2005  Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774


Joins Vet to Perform Physical Exam on African Elephant

ATLANTA - Today Governor Sonny Perdue visited Zoo Atlanta to learn more about its conservation efforts in China and South and Central America .  During his visit, Governor Perdue, a licensed veterinarian, assisted Zoo staff to perform a physical exam on Zambezi , a 23 year-old African elephant. 

“Zoo Atlanta 's international conservation efforts have positive implications for Georgia as we cultivate international partnerships on other levels,” said Governor Sonny Perdue.  “I encourage Georgians to visit Zoo Atlanta, which is one of the state's oldest cultural tourist attractions, and enjoy the spectacular animal exhibits with their families.” 

Dr. Maria Crane, vice president of veterinary services, guided Governor Perdue through Zambezi 's physical exam, a procedure performed as part of the Zoo's routine weekly wellness check of the animals.   

Zoo Atlanta officials briefed Governor Perdue on the Zoo's panda conservation efforts in China and the leadership role Zoo Atlanta is taking to reverse amphibian decline in South and Central America.

“We are elated about Governor Perdue's interest in Zoo Atlanta's conservation efforts,” said Dennis Kelly, president and CEO of Zoo Atlanta.  “Governor Perdue values historic institutions like Zoo Atlanta, and as a veterinarian himself, has a deep respect for our work.”

Zoo Atlanta , which was established in 1889, is an American Zoo & Aquarium (AZA) accredited institution that exhibits, interprets, studies and cares for wildlife in world-class environments. Zoo Atlanta prides itself on its mission to conserve biodiversity throughout the world, educate and entertain the public and contribute to the cultural life of the community.  Approximately 700,000 visitors tour Zoo Atlanta each year.  For more information call (404) 624-5600 or visit Zoo Atlanta's Web site at .