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Young elephant recovers from virus at Maryland Zoo

Thursday - 4/4/2013, 9:21am  ET

BALTIMORE (AP) -- The 5-year-old elephant named Samson at the Maryland Zoo continues to recover from a potentially deadly herpes virus.

Curator Mike McClure says Samson's activity level has returned to normal most days. Veterinarians are optimist he will recover. He was seen Wednesday playing with mulch after getting a bath.

Animal keepers have reduced Samson's medications in recent weeks from three doses a day to two. Eventually, he will receive medication once a day.

The zoo says they hope to have Samson in the main elephant yard when the weather warms up to give visitors a chance to see him playing with new toys.

Officials began noticing in February that Samson might be sick. Herpes is often lethal in elephants.

Samson is the only elephant born at the zoo in 137 years.

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