How many commands does a zoo elephant know?
In his daily contact with the elephants, an elephant keeper uses about 16 different commands. By means of these commands, he communicates verbally with the elephants. In addition, body language is used to back up all these commands. This communication is an important factor in the safe handling and care of elephants.
In a zoo, elephants are familiar with the commands used in everyday training. Circus elephants must learn a number of additional commands for their work in the ring.
Which language does an elephant keeper use?
The language used for commands is more or less similar all over central Europe and is composed of English, German and Singhalese.
At the same time, every zoo and circus also uses a few special commands of its own.
What exactly are the commands?
- come here = come to me
- side = move aside
- go back = move backwards
- go on = move forwards
- down = lie down, on elbows and knees
- lay down = lie on your side
- up = stand up again
- stand = stand still
- rangu = lift up your trunk
- lift = lift up your foot
- diup = lower your head
- push = push an object
- derri = hold an object
- lasch = let the object go
- Foot here = put your foot here
- Foot back = put your foot back
- Ai tschi tschi tschili bullibulli fist = Animate the elephants, before the circus performance or for veterinary samples of urine to urinate and defecate.
In order to increase the attention of the elephants, the word “allez” or the name of the elephant is usually advanced before each command.
It is very important, that every positively executed command is rewarded with a praising: “good girl!” or “good boy!“