Alaska News

Maggie the elephant, longtime former resident of the Alaska Zoo, has died

Maggie, an African elephant that lived at the Alaska Zoo for 24 years, has died at a wildlife sanctuary in California. She was 41 years old.

Maggie died at the Performing Animal Welfare Society wildlife sanctuary in San Andreas, where she lived for 13 years after being relocated there from Alaska.

“Maggie passed away on Tuesday beneath her favorite shady oak tree and near preferred mudholes in the sanctuary’s largest habitat, with PAWS’ staff on hand,” PAWS said in a statement.

Alaska Zoo director Pat Lampi said in a statement that Maggie touched the lives of many Alaskans and people “all over the world.”

[Previous coverage: Maggie, the Alaska Zoo’s old elephant, is loving retirement]

“I take comfort in knowing that the past 13 years she was in the loving care of our friends at PAWS and in the company of her close companion Lulu,” another African elephant, Lampi said.

Maggie had significant arthritis and dental disease for the majority of her life, PAWS said in a statement. Those conditions had worsened and contributed to her death, PAWS said in the statement. A necropsy has been performed at U.C. Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, PAWS said.


[How a 1960s publicity stunt landed a baby elephant named Annabelle in Alaska]

Maggie was born in Zimbabwe in 1982 and captured as a calf, according to PAWS. Maggie was originally brought to the Alaska Zoo in 1983 as a companion for Asian elephant Annabelle. Annabelle died in 1997.

Following Annabelle’s death, Maggie’s physical and mental health declined. Public outcry ensued, and in 2007 she was moved to the PAWS wildlife sanctuary.

Samantha Davenport

Samantha Davenport is a former ADN reporter.