zoo animals

Manila city gov’t tasks Davao museum to preserve Mali’s bones

Dennis Jay Santos

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Manila city gov’t tasks Davao museum to preserve Mali’s bones

COOLING OFF. Asian Elephant Mali bathes at Manila Zoo on January 22, 2019.


Once completed, Mali’s bones will be displayed at the Davao museum for at least three months

DAVAO, Philippines – The bones of Manila Zoo’s Mali, the elephant, will be taken to Davao City for treatment and preservation.

The Manila City government has commissioned Davao’s D’Bone Collector Museum to work on the bones of Vishwa Ma’ali, popularly known as Mali, who died on Tuesday afternoon, November 28.

Darrell Blatchley, the founder of the bone museum, confirmed to Rappler on Saturday, December 2, that his group was commissioned by the city government of Manila to perform the bone preservation.

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Manila Zoo’s lone elephant Mali dies

Manila Zoo’s lone elephant Mali dies

Mali had reached the average lifespan of 40 to 45 years for elephants of her species. She was 43.

The elephant succumbed to congestive heart failure and pancreatic cancer, Manila Zoo chief veterinarian Heinrich Patrick Peña-Domingo told a press briefing on November 29.

Mali had also shown signs of mild kidney inflammation, liver nodules, and pus deposits in the uterus.

Blatchley’s museum mainly houses preserved bone specimens of large marine animals, including those of exotic and endangered kinds.

He said he will bring the bones to Davao to work on their preservation.

“I figured it would be costly for me to keep coming back to Manila. So, I have decided to bring the bones to my Davao shop and do the work there [in Davao],” he said.

Once completed, Blatchley said Mali’s bones will be displayed at the Davao museum for at least three months.

Blatchley said he aims to finish the work by the end of December.

The Manila the city government earlier said it planned to preserve Mali’s remains through taxidermy, which will be displayed in a museum later on.

An American who has been living in Davao for nearly three decades, Blatchley is a recipient of the Davao City government’s prestigious Datu Bago award for exemplary community service.

He was also honored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for his efforts in raising awareness about preserving the environment and marine ecology.

The museum he founded has been preserving bone specimens of endangered marine species, many of which succumbed to ingesting plastic materials discarded into the ocean. The museum emphasizes the urgent necessity to conserve the environment. – Rappler.com

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