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British zookeeper is reunited with animal he cared for 32 years ago – and is instantly recognised by his old friend

A British zookeeper has shared a fond reunion with an elephant he cared for more than 30 years ago.

Peter Adamson was instantly recognised by his old friend Kirsty, an Asian elephant who lived at a Glasgow zoo in the 1970s and 1980s.

Mr Adamson was a keeper at Calderpark Zoo and looked after Kirsty during the early 1970s, before she moved away in 1987.

He had lost track of her when she left Scotland but recently discovered that she had moved to Germany and arranged to go and visit her.

The two shared a warm hug at their reunion in Germany as Mr Adamson stroked the elephant and Kirsty curled her trunk around him.

Mr Adamson said: ‘Of course, I was wondering if there was any truth to the phrase “elephants never forget”.

‘That she allowed me to get close and accepted me was a very emotional experience for me. I will always keep that memory in my heart.’

Zookeepers said the elephant had probably recognised her former minder by the sound of his voice.

The Scotsman said he will try to visit Kirsty as much as possible now he knows where she lives.

Kirsty, born in 1967, has been living in Neunkirchen Zoo in the western state of Saarland since 2005.

After leaving Glasgow she had moved to Chester in north-west England where she met her female companion Judy for the first time.

The pair later moved to Dublin where they lived together from 1994 until 2005 until finally being shipped to Germany.

‘After a colourful life with several moves around European zoos she has found her retirement retreat with us,’ her current zookeepers said.

The zoo’s website describes her as ‘intelligent and willing to learn’ but also ‘dominant over members of her species’.

Mr Adamson had found Kirsty’s whereabouts by searching online and made contact with the German zookeepers through friends in the city of Trier, the zoo said.

Calderpark Zoo closed in August 2003 after running up huge debts.

Maris Lopez
Maris Lopezhttp:////
Hey there! I'm Maris, an American girl who is passionate about adventure, the outdoors and all things travel!


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