Texas zoo: Tiger’s killing of mate surprising
By JUAN CARLOS LLORCA, 09.09.11, 05:27 PM EDT
Seri, the 3-year-old female who was sent to El Paso from the San Diego Zoo about 15 months ago, seemed to have bonded with 6-year-old Wzui during the two-and-a-half months they were together, said Steve Marshal, the director of the El Paso Zoo. The tigers had tried mating, and hours before Thursday’s attack were seen frolicking and “being affectionate,” he said.
“We did not see any indication this was coming. It took us completely by surprise, the staff is shocked,” Marshal said.
A zoo visitor witnessed the attack, but Marshal declined to publicly identify the witness. He said Seri killed Wzui by chomping down on the side of his neck and choking him.
“We arrived too late,” Marshall added.
Tara Harris, the conservation director at the Minnesota Zoo, said attacks such as Thursday’s almost never happen.