The Most Exotic Animals Ever Gifted to Queen Elizabeth
The queen of England has been gifted a variety of bizarre gifts throughout her reigning years. Yet, none of them quite compare to the variety of exotic animals given to her by presidents, governments, royal families, and people over the years. From elephants to exotic birds, see some of the most exotic animals every gifted to the queen, ahead.
1. An elephant
In 1972, the queen of England was gifted an African forest elephant named Jumbo. Given to her by President Ahidjo of Cameroon, the elephant was actually flown home to Britain and placed in the London Zoo. According to the Royal Collection, Jumbo was fed an in-flight meal of bananas, avocados and sugar.
2. Several crocodiles
The queen and her family members have been gifted crocodiles on several occasions. Including a baby crocodile given to Prince George by Australia when he was just three days old.
3. A pair of sloths
In 1968, the queen left for a state visit in Brazil. She returned with not one, but two sloths.
4. Two black jaguars
In addition to sloths, the queen was also gifted two black jaguars, named Marques and Aizita from Brazil. She sent them to the London Zoo, as well.
5. Liberian pygmy hippos
The exotic animals don’t stop there. In 1961, the queen graciously accepted a pair of Liberian pygmy hippos from President Tubman of Liberia.
6. A couple of beavers
While on an official visit to Canada in 1970, the queen was gifted a pair of Canadian beavers — the country’s official animal. When she returned home, she donated her furry friends to the London Zoo.
7. Several toucans
Land animals aren’t the only exotic animals gifted to the queen. She’s been gifted several types of birds, too. In fact, in 1976, she accepted a pair of toco toucans, a pair of red-billed toucans, and a pair of Ariel toucans, gifted to her by President Artur da Costa e Silva of Brazil.
8. Giant anteaters and an armadillo
In addition to toucans, President Artur da Costa e Silva of Brazil also gifted the queen two giant anteaters and an armadillo. They were sent to the London Zoo with the toucans.
9. A pair of Aldabra giant tortoises
While some of her royal pets have passed on, the queen has a few that will live an entire lifetime (if not, longer). Case in point: the Aldabra giant tortoises given to her by the government and people of the Seychelles in 1972.
Australia has gifted the queen many exotic animals throughout her reign, including six red kangaroos. Given to her to commemorate her Silver Jubilee in 1977, the queen donated all six kangaroos to the London Zoo.
11. Trumpeter swans
Fun fact: The queen owns all of the breeding mute swans in Britain (a total of 5,300 pairs). And she once owned a pair of trumpeter swans, given to her by British Columbia, Canada, in 1956.
Another exotic animal gifted by Australia? Two pairs of bare-eyed cockatoos. Given to her in 1963, the cockatoos (along with one dwarf cassowary and two white Bennett’s wallabies) were donated to the London Zoo.
13. A pig
In 1963, the queen was gifted a pig from the people of Fiji. That said, this was one animal the queen didn’t bring back to England with her. The pig remained in Fiji.
14. Jersey cows
The queen has been gifted many different types of cows throughout her reign, including several Jersey cows. In 1957, the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society gifted the queen her first Jersey cow, which was later sent to live with the royal dairy herd at Windsor Castle. Twenty-one years later, in 1978, the Royal Jersey Agricultural and Horticultural Society gifted her another Jersey cow.
15. Several Arab stallions
The queen loves her horses — and the rest of the world knows it. On several occasions, she’s been gifted Arab stallions, as well as Oldenburg horses, Danish horses, and Bay horses.
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