There were jumbo celebrations at Perth Zoo today as Tricia the Asian Elephant celebrated her 65th birthday!

The much-loved matriarch was gifted a delicious birthday treat made of all her favourite foods thanks to her team of dedicated zoo keepers. 

Zoo staff, volunteers and visitors were delighted to watch Tricia enjoying the frozen bran and fruit cake with fellow female Asian Elephant, Permai. 

Senior Keeper, Kirsty Carey, said: “At 65 years old, Tricia is well into her twilight years, so we are incredibly lucky to celebrate another birthday milestone with her. 

“Tricia is one of the oldest Asian Elephants in the world and sadly, we know she will not live forever. 

“She has already surpassed the average life expectancy for an Asian Elephant. In fact there is only one other elephant in Australasia who is over sixty years old, so every day we have with Tricia is an extra special gift.”

Over the past 12 months, Tricia has shown signs of aging and has slowed down. 

“We knew the day would come when she would slow down and prefer to have a quieter life – and that day is now. Tricia needs to take things a bit more slowly and do things at her own pace.”

“If she wants to sleep in, that’s her choice. If she is not up for meeting the public, that’s her choice. Tricia’s care and welfare is our priority – everything we do is designed to make her as comfortable and happy as possible,” Kirsty said. 

“It really is a privilege to work with such a special animal, particularly one as iconic to Perth’s history as Tricia. 

“She has had a monumental impact on all the visitors who have seen her, and helped to educate millions of people about the plight of her cousins in the wild.

Fact File: 
•    Tricia arrived at Perth Zoo in January 1963 from Ho Chi Minh City via Singapore.
•    She was named after Tricia Reschke, Miss Australia 1962; 
•    There are only one other Asian Elephant in Australasia in it’s sixties, ‘Saigon’ at Sydney Zoo;  
•    In 2020 Tricia was honoured with a Transperth ferry named after her, the MV Tricia;
•    Asian Elephants are endangered with as few as 34,000 individuals remaining due to habitat loss and poaching; 
•    Funds raised from Perth Zoo’s elephant artwork helps protect valuable habitat for critically endangered Sumatran Elephants in the wild.