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Trunks unpacked as happy trio settle in ahead of big opening at Blackpool Zoo

Minbu, Tara, and Kate in the new elephant house at Blackpool Zoo (Picture Blackpool Zoo/Facebook)
Minbu, Tara, and Kate in the new elephant house at Blackpool Zoo (Picture Blackpool Zoo/Facebook)
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Blackpool’s new elephants have unpacked their trucks and are settling in well.

Minbu and Tara recently joined Kate at the new elephant house, which will finally be opened to the public on Saturday.

The pair arrived from Twycross Zoo, with mother and calf Noorjahan and Esha, set to follow in the near future.

It is hoped a bull elephant will also be brought in as part of a breeding programme, though no details have yet been announced.

Minbu (inset) and Kate, the zoo’s longest-serving resident having lived there for 46 years, are both ‘decidedly dominant’ elephants but have ‘developed a level of mutual respect and are very accepting of each other’, the East Park Drive attraction said.

Director Darren Webster said he was ‘hugely excited’ at the opening, and added: “The introductions between our current three residents have gone extremely well and they are all settling into their new home.

“This is the beginning of a new and exciting time for Blackpool Zoo as we strive to set the standard for elephant care. Project Elephant will never be finished, it is our commitment to a future where Asian elephants can thrive – in our care, in the care of others and in the wild.”

Members of the zoo will be given a special tour of the new elephant house, built as part of the £5m Project Elephant development, tomorrow night before it officially opens to the public on Saturday.

It had been due to open last summer but was hit by delays because of the weather.