Another super predator on the loose kills and mauls people. These super predators will act on instinct. Yet in the southwest they are going to release Jaguars in and around our communities. We all ready have habituated wolves in our yards threatening our children why do we need more super predators. These super predators will terrorize human communities just as the wolves are doing today.
I am sorry for the victims and my heart goes out to them. We need to stop believing the disneyesque view of these large predators and understand the dangers that wild wolves and large wild cats pose to humans.
A Siberian tiger escaped from her cage, killing a visitor and mauling two others Tuesday evening at the San Francisco Zoo, almost exactly a year after she attacked her keeper during a feeding, zoo officials said.
Police shot and killed the tiger, named Tatiana, outside the zoo’s Terrace Cafe shortly after 5 p.m. as the park readied to close after a quiet Christmas Day. The 350-pound tiger escaped from her fortified grotto by either jumping or climbing over a moat and a wall and immediately attacked and killed a man in his early 20s just steps away.
Then Tatiana headed for the Terrace Cafe, and attacked and seriously injured two other visitors, said Robert Jenkins, the zoo’s director of animal care and conservation. Jenkins said he was “astounded” by Tatiana’s escape and at a loss to explain how it happened.
The zoo will be closed Wednesday as investigators try to determine how Tatiana escaped her enclosure, which was reinforced after the cat’s first attack two days before Christmas last year.
Police encountered the tiger outside the cafe, as she was mauling a young man who was covered in blood, said San Francisco Police Department Sgt. Steve Mannina. When the four officers moved closer, the tiger turned toward them and they immediately shot and killed her.
Officials did not identify the victims, but said they all were in their early 20s.
KCBS radio reported that the tiger attacked two brothers, ages 18 and 19, and killed a 23-year-old man who was their friend, but that report could not be confirmed.
The surviving victims were taken to San Francisco General Hospital with serious injuries, where they underwent surgery late Tuesday night, said hospital administrator Ruby Martin. The two young men were expected to survive.
Some zoo employees locked themselves in the gift shop as they had been instructed in case of emergency, but would not comment further. Other zoo employees huddled near a zoo entrance hours after the attack also declined to talk to reporters.
The zoo, festooned with holiday decorations, was quickly evacuated after the attacks were reported, while police helicopters hovered overhead and officers swept the grounds to see if others were injured. By 9 p.m., police said all the animals were accounted for and no additional victims had been found. The tigers were moved into locked cages for the night.
According to the zoo’s Web site, the zoo’s two Siberian tigers, Tony and Tatiana, live in an outdoor enclosure near the Lion House. The zoo also has three Sumatran tigers at the west end of the Lion House. Both types of tigers are classified as endangered species.
The attack occurred about a year after Tatiana attacked and seriously injured keeper Lori Komejan’s arm during a regular afternoon feeding at the Lion House.
The California Division of Occupation Safety and Health later ruled the zoo was responsible for that incident, blaming poor training and the way the tiger enclosures were designed.
Zoo officials closed the Lion House for renovations and did not open it until September. Tatiana’s enclosure, which she shared with Tony, was fortified after the 2006 attack, Jenkins said.Safety measures can only help so much when dealing with predators such as tigers, said Chris Austria, an animal trainer who has worked with tigers at Marine World in Vallejo and with bears at the San Francisco Zoo. The attacks likely had little to do with hunger, he said.“San Francisco Zoo has always been very safety-conscious and well-trained,” he said. “But when they’re working with wild animals, they’re very hard to control. When they escape their habitats, they can be very aggressive.” San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom issued a statement saying that he was “deeply saddened” to hear about the attacks and that they would be thoroughly investigated.
“This is a tragic event for San Francisco,” said Lt. Ken Smith of the San Francisco Fire Department. “We pride ourself on our city and tourists coming here to our city for all the beauty it has.”