SF Zoo raises height of lion and tiger exhibit walls
Patricia Yollin, Chronicle Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
(02-06) 19:10 PST San Francisco — The San Francisco Zoo announced today that it has completed the first phase of improvements to its four big-cat grottos, which have been closed since a lethal Christmas Day attack in which a Siberian tiger named Tatiana killed one patron and mauled his two friends before being shot dead by police.
The concrete moat walls, which were 12 1/2 feet high, have been extended to 16.4 feet, meeting the minimum guidelines of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
Glazing and fencing on top of the walls has raised the height of the barriers to 19 feet. Hot wire, which emits electric shocks to animals that come in contact with it, has been installed along the moat walls.
Other additions include a storm sewer, irrigation system, and new paving and landscaping. Meanwhile, trees, vines and other vegetation in and around the grottos has been removed.
The second phase, scheduled for completion sometime in March, includes replacing temporary fencing materials with stainless steel wire mesh and installing hot wire along the finger walls of the grottos.
Zoo officials haven’t decided when the grottos will reopen because they said its inhabitants will need time to adjust to the upgrades.
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