Thursday, October 20, 2011

The tally in Zanesville


Blame lies squarely at the feet of an Ohio animal park owner for forcing officials to kill 48 exotic animals rather than compromise public safety (in this clip, Jack Hanna explains why the animals could not be tranquilized). Shortly before dusk on Tuesday, their cages were thrown open by their 62-year-old owner who then killed himself. Below are the animal casualties:
  • 18 Bengal tigers
  • 17 lions
  • 6 black bears
  • 3 mountain lions
  • 2 grizzly bears
  • 2 wolves
  • 1 baboon
The only creature unaccounted for, a macaque, was believed to have been eaten by one of the big cats. Six of the animals - 3 leopards, 2 monkeys, and a grizzly bear - were captured and taken to the Columbus Zoo. Hanna, the zoo's director emeritus, is sickened by the situation - particularly the loss of the endangered tigers - and vows to force the State of Ohio to shore up its notoriously lenient restrictions on owning exotic pets. "It's like Noah's Ark wrecking right here in Zanesville, Ohio."

Photo: The remains of animals that were shot after being released from the 73-acre private Muskingum County Animal Farm. They will be buried on the property (more photos here and here).

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