Valdosta, GA – Queenie, the Asian elephant, who lived for eight years in her retirement at Wild Adventures Theme Park, died earlier today at age 59. Wild Adventures zoological operations staff members arrived in the morning to find Queenie in a weakened state.
“We knew that Queenie’s health had been in decline for some time,” said Wild Adventures General Manager Bob Montgomery, “and we have been working with other zoo veterinarians to determine the best way to manage Queenie’s chronic health issues. Unfortunately we had to make a quality of life decision this morning.
We are comforted by the fact that we were able to give her a great place to live out the rest of her life and are thankful for the time we were able to share her with our guests and our team members. She will be missed,” concluded Montgomery.
Queenie came to Wild Adventures in 2003 to retire and live out her golden years. Born in 1952, Queenie is believed to be one of the oldest Asian elephants in North America. Queenie’s claim to fame was that she was known to be the world’s only water-skiing elephant. Average life expectancy for Asian elephants is 50 to 70 years.
Wild Adventures is a 170-acre theme park, water park, and animal park all in one place for less located in Valdosta, Georgia. The park features one of the largest ride collections in the South, more than 500 wild animals, Splash Island Water Park, the region’s largest water park, shows, festivals and all-star concerts. The park is owned and operated by Herschend Family Entertainment (HFE), a company specializing in family entertainment. For nearly half a century, HFE has owned, operated or partnered in 21 properties across nine states, including Branson, Missouri’s Silver Dollar City; operating partner with Dolly Parton in Tennessee’s Dollywood and Dollywood’s Splash Country; operating partner in Atlanta’s Stone Mountain Park and owners of Ride the Ducks amphibious tours in six cities.