Much Maligned Oakland Elephants Get a Helping Hand

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    NEWSLETTERS

    An elephant and a trainer at the Oakland Zoo. Photo: KQEDquest on Flickr

    A North Bay high school is doing its part to help decriminalize Oakland's largest criminals.

    A small grove of invasive palm trees, near Sir Francis Drake High School in San Anselmo, were cut down last week partly to help feed the elephants at the Oakland Zoo.

    The long-trunked group has been much maligned recently after a group of the zoo's neighbor's cried foul over the elephants feeding off of black acacia trees from a local city park.

    Zookeepers admitted in January that they had been cutting down the trees for seven years with the permission of the Navy, who used to run the park. But residents were still upset.

    Tamalpais school district officials removed the trees to make room for indigenous plant and instead of hauling the remains to the dump, officials decided to donate them to the zoo, who has been collecting trees for elephants since winter storms knocked them down across the Bay Area.