For the first time ever, a zoo is utilizing an app created to enhance the welfare of elephants kept in human care.
Using the app, keepers at Somerset's Noah's Ark Zoo Farm can better recognize and monitor behavioral changes in elephants.
The app was created by University of Nottingham researchers to aid in endangered species conservation.
The lead researcher, Dr. Lisa Yon, said that caring for elephants is both a great honor and a challenge.
"Therefore, it is crucial that we determine which elements are the most crucial for promoting the expression of natural behaviors and beneficial welfare. ".
Experts believe that zoo elephant cousins are crucial to the preservation of the species because both African and Asian elephants are threatened in the wild.
For their African elephants Shaka, Janu, and Sutton, The Zoo Farm, a wildlife charity, recently opened a plantation.
First of its kind in the UK, the 5,000 sq m (54,000 sq ft) space is located inside one of the elephant enclosures.
The head of the elephant section at Noah's Ark Zoo, Tom Lindley, stated: "We think that our elephant enclosure is one of the best facilities for elephants in the world, providing top-notch welfare.
"However, we are constantly looking for new ways to enhance and preserve elephant welfare.
This app will contribute to the protection of these lovely animals so that future generations can continue to appreciate them. ".
With initial users from the UK to the US, Indonesia to South Africa, the app is freely available to all elephant facilities worldwide.