Transcript for Ringling Bros. Announces End to Elephant Performances
Reporter: News tonight that the very animals practically S synonymous with the circus are headed fir their final curtain call. Ringing brothers parent company announcing today that the iconic elephant performances will be eliminated by 2018. It is bittersweet, because the elephants have been on the circus for 145 years. But it's the best thing for our company and most of all, for the elephants. Reporter: This, after a growing chorus has expressed concern about how the elephants are treated. The ring leader in these protests, PETA, who now says the 2018 date is too far off. We don't want to be fighting off legislation, you know, week in and week out, city to city. Reporter: The elephants, such an integral part of this American tradition. Jumbo, the first international animal superstar, was said to bring in the largest crowds in the history of pt bar name's greatest show on Earth. The show will go on, with other animals. And the 13 elephants currently on tour now set to retire in three years. Spending the rest of their days here, at the ringing brothers and Barnum and Bailey center for elephant conservation no more pageantry. Just the legend of these animals, which will not soon be forgotten. Linsey Davis, ABC news, new York.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.