Rarest elephant
United Kingdom (Chester Zoo)
The rarest elephant on record is Motty, a male calf born at Chester Zoo, England, on 11 July 1978, because he is the only known example of a hybrid between the African elephant (Loxodonta africana) and the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus). His father was Jumbolino, a bull African elephant, his mother was Sheba, a cow Asian elephant, and he lived for ten days before dying from necrotic enterocolitis and an E. coli septicaemia. He possessed a fascinating combination of features from both species and his skin was preserved as a mounted taxiderm specimen, which is housed at the Natural History Museum, London. Until Motty's birth, it was not believed possible that interspecific elephant hybrids could occur, and none has been recorded since.