MIAMI, Fla. (FOX 13) - A 51-year-old female elephant died after a confrontation with another elephant at Zoo Miami, the zoo said Monday.
"It is with great sadness that Zoo Miami reports that 'Cita,' a nearly 51 year old female African elephant, died Friday evening shortly after having a confrontation with 'Peggy,' another African elephant, where she was knocked down and was unable to recover," the zoo announced.
The zoo said Cita underwent a necropsy that shows a blood clot may have been a major contributing factor to her death.
The zoo said Cita was already suffering from a variety of age-related issues like advanced arthritis, and when Peggy knocked her down, she was unable to stand again and eventually a thrown blood clot led to her death.
"Elephants are very social animals and have a strict hierarchy within their groups. Confrontations within those groups to reinforce an individual's status are not uncommon," Zoo Miami said.
The zoo tried to help Cita with medications for her pain and stress but Cita was unable to get back on her feet.
Cita joined the zoo in 2016 after living at a zoo in Virginia. She joined long-time residents "Peggy" and "Mabel," who were affectionately called "The Golden Girls" because of their advanced age and because Zoo Miami is where they are spending their retirement.