In 1971, Rosie was captured from the wild and imported to the United States. She lived in several Florida facilities during her early years. She moved to the Zoo in Jackson, Mississippi, in 1977 at the age of six years. Juno, an African female, joined her at the Zoo in 1982. Rosie and Juno lived together at the Jackson Zoo until 2010, when they were transferred to the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere. At the Nashville Zoo, they joined Hadari and Sukari. Juno died in the spring of 2015. Hadari, Sukari, and Rosie were retired to The Elephant Sanctuary in the fall of 2015.
Rosie became the 27th resident retired to The Elephant Sanctuary.
The smallest African elephant at The Sanctuary, Rosie's trunk is both narrow and short. Unlike most African elephants, Rosie does not have tusks. She is easily identified by her crooked tail that resembles the handle of a coffee mug and two circular holes in her right ear. Rosie often wags her tail back and forth like a dog. Rosie’s mouth is upturned on either side so that it looks like she is always smiling.
Rosie spent her last five years at the Nashville Zoo with Sukari and Hadari. At The Sanctuary, Rosie continues to share space daily with Sukari. The duo will nap together at night, spend time side by side, and walk around the yard together during the day. Rosie is the more dominant elephant, and she frequently displays her dominance over Sukari in a variety of ways. She will most often displace Sukari if food, hay, or browse is left in their shared space. Introductions to sharing space with Tange began in the summer of 2016.
Prior to arriving at The Elephant Sanctuary, Rosie was managed through restricted contact. She is currently making the transition to protected contact. At 46 years of age, Rosie is the elephant at Africa barn that requires the most care and attention. She has had a variety of health problems including lameness in her front right leg and abscesses in her nails. Individualized health care and innovative barn renovations, including a sand stall have helped improve Rosie’s overall health in a relatively short period of time. Her condition continues to be monitored closely by Veterinary and Care Staff.Rosie is described as an attentive but calm elephant and the Care Staff report she enjoys enrichment, especially hanging items. Rosie will flip the enrichment up so it is on top of her head and rub back and forth. She also likes to chew on the fire hose boondoggle (a braided “basket”) enrichment item.