VIENNA (AP) — Austria’s economy minister has become the symbolic godmother of a young elephant, in a nod of thanks after the government used a cartoon of the large mammal as a reference to help people put pandemic distancing recommendations into perspective.
Margarete Schramboeck was named godmother to Kibali the elephant in a ceremony at Vienna’s Schoenbrunn Zoo on Monday. To help Austrians envision keeping the recommended one-metre apart, Schramboeck said authorities had spread the message it was “the length of a baby elephant”.
A government video had showed a cartoon of a baby elephant to drive the point home.
Schramboeck said, “most people, and certainly myself, thought of Kibali.”
Now one-year-old, Kibali has grown past the Austrian coronavirus distance guidance to 1.4 metres long.