April 26, 2012

Elephant Kills Zookeeper | Helen Schofield An 'Inspiration'... | Stuff.co.nz

Shocked to read that Helen Schofield had been killed last night. There was some confusion when the first reports described her as a vet, then a keeper, but of course she was both, running the Franklin Zoo near Auckland and caring for Mila, the animal rehomed from a circus life.
As well as the article at the link above, we have others - http://www.stuff.co.nz/waikato-times/news/6807669/Nervous-elephant-crushes-zoo-carer
and the one about her former circus owner and his attempts to visit her.
A friend of mine is currently touring Thailand, India etc and there are photos of him with elephants - he said he could not stop grinning. I know how he feels - my visit to Kashin at Auckland Zoo, behind the scenes, before she died was so memorable. There is something magical about them, but like all zoo animals, their unpredictability and sheer size are a constant danger.
I wonder what decision will be made about Mila now.


  1. A radio interview with helen was made in March 2010

    and here is a video

  2. Surely we can best honour Ms Schofield's memory by pursuing her goal of sending Mila to live out her days with her own kind. Hopefully some kind of initiative will come in time from the caring veterinary community. I know that many would love to contribute. As for former 'owner' Mr Ratcliffe, he should quietly reflect that another has paid the price for his foolish dreams.

  3. It sounds as though Ms Schofield was a very caring person. I'm afraid that circuses that use animals are on the list of things of which I disapprove strongly and it sounds as if Mila was a product of that cruelty. I have mixed feelings about zoos but it would seem that Ms Schofield's zoo was more of an animal welfare institution. All in all it's a very sad situation.

  4. Facebook support group for Mila:

  5. This is so sad! She sounds like she was a very caring person.


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