Source AP ©

Elephant flies to sunny California

Maggie, Alaska's only elephant, made her way to California. It will be her new home after living nearly her whole life in the cold state.

The 25-year-old African elephant arrived at Travis Air Force Base here bound for the Performing Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) in the northern California town of San Andreas 85 miles (137 kilometers) away.

The Air Force agreed to transport Maggie - for years Alaska's only elephant - as part of a training mission after officials with PAWS and the zoo discovered she was too big for a commercial airline.

Maggie was locked and loaded into a special metal crate Thursday and arrived about midnight at Travis in Fairfield. She was trucked to her new home at the sanctuary, where she will have 30 acres (12.14 hectares) to share with nine other elephants.

Maggie elephant (360gradusov.lv)
Maggie elephant (360gradusov.lv)
Maggie arrived in Alaska as a baby in 1983 after her herd was culled in South Africa. She lived as the sole occupant in the zoo's elephant house with concrete floors and a small outside enclosure.

The move comes after a monthslong battle between those wanting Maggie to stay at The Alaska Zoo and those advocating for a warmer climate.

The zoo board initially balked at sending Maggie to another facility. With pressure mounting to do better by the elephant, the zoo embarked on an expensive campaign to improve her quality of life, including building a $100,000 (€69,333) treadmill Maggie could not be coaxed into using.

Pleas to have her moved grew louder this year when Maggie twice could not get back on her feet. Firefighters were called to hoist the 8,000-pound (3,629-kilo) animal into a standing position.

The move became reality after retired game show host Bob Barker promised to donate $750,000 (€520,002) for her care.

Comments
What may happen to foreign tourists traveling for 2018 World Cup in Russia
Kremlin on failed nuclear missile tests: 'Listen to President Putin and believe him!'
Russian special services detain Hizb ut-Tahrir members in Crimea
Russian special services detain Hizb ut-Tahrir members in Crimea
Foreign Ministry official explains why Russia had to sell Alaska to US
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Just Words on Scraps of Paper
Just Words on Scraps of Paper
SWIFT refuses to cut Russia off, even if Washington insists
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Russia introduces new money for the first time in eight years
Russians massively break traffic rules on Crimea Bridge
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
The Royal Wedding and the Silly Season
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Kremlin on failed nuclear missile tests: 'Listen to President Putin and believe him!'
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Science Has Once Again Declared: ‘We Were Created’
Russian air defences ready to shoot down NATO drones and reconnaissance aircraft over Crimea
Iran's next moves on nuclear deal much more important - Kremlin
Venezuela may expect another Panama scenario from 1989