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MONDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2007
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Carol Buckley, director of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee, with Bunny. Buckley will give a lecture about the sanctuary Monday at Princess Theatre.
Courtesy photo/The Elephant Sanctuary
Carol Buckley, director of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee, with Bunny. Buckley will give a lecture about the sanctuary Monday at Princess Theatre.

Lecture to offer behind-the-scenes look at Tennessee Elephant Sanctuary

Carol Buckley, founding director of The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Tenn., will speak at the Princess Theatre Center for the Performing Arts on Monday at 7 p.m.

The nonprofit sanctuary is the nation’s largest natural-habitat elephant refuge, and is sanctioned by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.

Buckley’s lecture, entitled “The Elephant Sanctuary: A Captive Elephant’s Only Acceptable Alternative,” will feature video footage of the sanctuary’s elephant residents, which have all been retired from zoos and circuses.

“Most people have no idea that to force an elephant to live in a zoo enclosure or live in chains in a circus — they don’t recognize how intensely harmful that is,” Buckley said. “It’s a death sentence for the animal.”

She will also present an overview of the history and operations of the sanctuary and address the crisis facing the animals in captivity and in their home ranges.

The large creatures are naturally migratory animals, and in the wild, walk 30 to 50 miles each day. This migratory characteristic makes them poorly suited for lives in zoos and circuses, where they may spend up to 18 hours per day in chains, Buckley said.

At The Elephant Sanctuary, the mild-mannered beasts roam free in three separate and protected natural-habitat environments for Asian and African elephants.

General admission tickets are $10 or $5 for students and teachers. For more information, call 350-1778 or visit www.princesstheatre.org. Visit www.elephants.com for more information on the sanctuary.

The Princess lecture series is a partnership with Calhoun Community College and Bank Independent.

Danielle Komis Palmer

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