Japan's second oldest elephant in captivity dies after falling over at zoo

Hanako is seen eating fruit in this September 1999 file photograph.
Hanako is seen eating fruit in this September 1999 file photograph.

2007-01-29 - SAPPORO, Japan
A 60-year-old elephant at Sapporo Maruyama Zoo, the second oldest kept in captivity in Japan, died on Sunday, officials said. Hanako had been healthy until Saturday but suddenly died when she lost her balance and fell over, apparently squashing her internal organs. Hanako had been popular with visitors to the zoo since her arrival in July 1953. In 1999, Hanako briefly refused to eat following the death of an elephant at the zoo. But she eventually recovered and was the sole elephant at the zoo.

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