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Lily? Jaidee? Zoo wants your help to name new baby elephant

by: COURTESY OF THE OREGON ZOO: MICHAEL DURHAM - Asian elephant Rose-Tu bonds with her new calf at the Oregon Zoo. The zoo is asking the community to help choose a name for the baby elephant.Want to help name the Oregon Zoo’s new baby elephant? Zoo elephant keepers are asking the community to choose a name for the week-old female calf born to Rose-Tu.

People who want to help can go online (http://www.oregonzoo.org ) and choose from five names:

Jaidee (Thai for “good-hearted”)

Sirikit (name for Thai royalty, literal meaning is “glorious”)

Rakhi (Sanskrit for “love/bond between siblings”)

Lily (following the flower theme of mom’s name, Rose-Tu, or Rose for short)

Siddhi (Sanskrit for “perfection”; wife of Ganesha)

“The outpouring support for the zoo and its newest resident has been incredible,” said Kim Smith, zoo director. “Rose-Tu and her calf are doing well. They’re bonding and comfortable with each other. Now it’s time to give the calf a name that suits her.”

Votes will be accepted through 5 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 9. The zoo will announce the winning name on Monday, Dec. 10.

The calf, born Nov. 30 at 2:17 a.m., weighed a hefty 300 pounds at birth and has been described by zoo animal-care staff as a “spitfire.”

It might still take a little time before the new baby is ready for visitors though.

“The main thing determining that will be the strength of the bond between Rose-Tu and the calf,” said Bob Lee, the zoo’s elephant curator. “Rose should allow the calf to nurse regularly, sleep, play and generally act like a calf without trying to stop it and control its movements. Then we’ll determine whether she’s calm and comfortable with staff around. And finally, we want to make sure the calf has had a chance to bond with the rest of the herd.”