A favorite among visitors, Elvis the aardvark passed away on Monday, shortly before his 25th birthday. The zoo announced that his youngest progeny, named Memphis, was born on Tuesday, without having ever met his father.
Officials at Germany's Frankfurt Zoo announced Thursday that the popular aardvark Elvis died on Monday, shortly before his twenty-fifth birthday. Officials say he had suffered from a cyst recently and despite a quick recovery, became inactive and stopped eating over the weekend.
Aardvarks rarely reach the age of 25 and Christine Kurrle, a spokeswoman for the zoo, said, "all indications suggest that his time had come," adding: "He reached the natural end of his life."
The aardvark, a nocturnal, burrowing mammal, is native to southern Africa. Its name is derived from the Afrikaans "erdvark," or earth pig, describing the animal's burrowing habits.
'Do you miss me tonight?'
Elvis, who was known to be good with kids and enjoyed riding in the zoo's freight elevator, had been at the zoo since 1997. His name came from the fact that he was born in Memphis, Tennessee, the hometown of his namesake, Elvis Presley.
Throughout his long life Elvis fathered cubs in Germany, England and the Netherlands. The mammal featured heavily in a recent episode of an ARD public TV series about zoo animals; it was called "Love me tender," and examined Elvis' long-lived virility and his range of partners.
He leaves behind one of his partners Ermine, who gave birth to his most recent progeny, Memphis, on Tuesday. Memphis was chosen as a name as the cub was female, Frankfurt Zoo had said that a male would have been named Elvis.