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Baby Barack [Not] Coming to Birmingham

Baby Barack, the elephant, will not appear at circus stop in Birmingham
By Alec Harvey — The Birmingham News
January 26, 2010, 12:37PM

Barack2.JPGBaby Barack made his debut a few weeks ago when the new tour of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus opened in Orlando.Baby Barack, the year-old Asian elephant making his debut in the current tour of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, will not appear during the circus stop in Birmingham this week, a publicist for the show says.

  After appearing in Orlando and Jacksonville, the first two stops of the new tour, Baby Barack returned with his mother, Bonnie, to the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Center for Elephant Conservation, a 200-acre facility run in Polk County, Fla.

“The Ringling Bros. veterinarians and animal husbandry staff wanted to further evaluate the  elephants’ health and acclimation to the touring Unit before they were moved out of the state  of Florida,” says Crystal I. Drake of Feld Entertainment. “Like all of our animals, Bonnie and  Barack are considered family and, as is the case with any family members, making   day-to-day decisions about what is best for their care and comfort means that their schedules can change.”

  Barack, born the day after Barack Obama’s inauguration, was the first elephant born in an ongoing artificial insemination program developed by the circus.

  Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is at the BJCC Arena in Birmingham Wednesday through Sunday.

  It is not known if Baby Barack will rejoin the circus later in the tour.

Updated at 1:10 p.m. with statement from Feld Entertainment. 

© 2010 al.com. All rights reserved.

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