Thursday, December 27, 2007

Tiger Mauling

(Artist credit: Jeff Wilkie)

It's all over the news about the tiger mauling at the San Francisco Zoo.

I have a rant about this situation, so bear with me. My rant may not be a majority view and may also be considered controversial.

First, my heart goes out to the family who lost their son in this manner. My heart also goes out to the other two people who were injured because this tiger got loose.

Second, this same tiger had injured a zoo worker previously and there was a question as to why the tiger was not put down.

Now for my rant ...

Wildlife are not meant to be held captive. It's just that simple. We have absolutely no business making money off these animals in places like zoos, enclosed "safaris" or animal parks, or marine parks.

If an animal gets loose and hurts someone, who is to blame? Certainly not the animal. So why kill the animal? Why not put them and the people out of danger by using tranquilizer guns on the animal?

It pisses me off that when someone is injured or killed by a wild animal, that the animal is then killed too. Why? What purpose does that serve? The animal is just being an animal. It did nothing wrong. They do not know right from wrong.

We have encroached upon the wildlife to the point where they have no choice but to often be part of our communities .. our suburbs ... our mountain life. If we choose to live where the wildlife live, then we had better learn to live with the consequences. It's not our right to just move in and to say "to hell with you" and shoot 'em on sight to get rid of them or to punish them for simply being animals.

Humans are not the owners of this planet. We are not the first species and we won't be the last.

Move to the mountains, but accept you will live among bears or raccoons digging into your trash cans or scaring the hell out of you when you go for a hike. Move to the beach and accept that you may see alligators or have sea gulls crapping on your head. Move to a suburb that juts against a hillside that's been known to be home to coyotes or wolves and make your necessary adjustments.

Why should the animals be punished for our greed and egos? It's ridiculous and again, it pisses me off.

One news article in the LA Times I read, says this about the tiger mauling at the zoo:

Asked why the animal was not put down after she attacked a zookeeper last year in the tigers' adjacent feeding area, Mollinedo said: "There was never consideration of putting Tatiana down. The tiger was acting like a normal tiger does."

Tigers are regarded as among the most fearsome, instinctual hunters in the animal world.

"Tigers are alpha predators. They kill and eat animals for food," said Tilson, "including humans."

Well DUH. If this has been known all along, why the hell was the tiger put in a zoo? What fun is it for the tiger to be in a habitat where it is restricted and where it is completely unnatural for them? And now just for being a tiger, it's been killed. One less tiger in a world where this species is endangered. One less tiger in a world that currently counts maybe 500 left all over the planet.

The dumb species is the humans.

'Nuf said.



  1. With all of the great technology available, viewing creatures in their natural habitat is easy and is definitely more educational. I've seen great "viewing" of Osprey nests and Puffin caves that way.

    Zoos are old fashioned and outdated. They should be abolished.

  2. Yup, viewing wildlife in their natural habitat would be the most humane thing to do. They are, after all, "wild" life.

    Down with zoos! lol

    Thx for always taking time to stop by here HM ... :-)

  3. Dolphin...
    I could not agree more. I live in the mountains and come across 600 to 700 pound black bears all summer long. 99.99% of the time they are more afraid of me then i of them and i know this. We have one around here tho that is garbage trained. he is about 3 years old and stands about 7 feet tall when upright. I came out of work one afternoon to see him in the dumpster. All i had to do was growl at him and when he looked at me he left.
    Tigers are Apex preditors. It is also known that 99.99% of the time a tiger will only attack from behind unless PROVOKED. So while i feel bad for the families the question begs to be asked...Why was the tiger so upset?

  4. Hi Soultaker ..

    Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts ...

    I had a pretty funny visual of you growling at the bear and the bear running off in terror LOL ...

    I agree with you on "why was the tiger so upset?" I was wondering the same thing myself ...

    Thx again for dropping by - it's very much appreciated.

    Happy New Year :-)

  5. I have a different point of view, although I agree with you guys that the tiger shouldn't have been killed. These parents are suing the zoo for millions of dollars! Although the height requirement wasn't made, I believe the tiger was going to get out anyway, and they were going to sue regardless of the height. There is always something to sue for. Even so, these idiots provolked a wild animal and suffered the consequences. I know I am harsh about this, but these kids did the stupidest thing you could ever think of. Death wasn't deserved, but come on, what did these kids expect? I don't think we need facts and proof to show that these kids taunted the tiger. Especially to a point that the tiger got out. They would be happily explaining what happened that day if they weren't involed. Instead they're being hostile, and now not talking. They can't be traumatized and hostile at the same time. They deserve medical bills to be paid, and some pain and suffering only if there is permanent disfiguration. That's maximum. What did these kids expect to happen?! Stupid. Sorry for being to insensitive, but a very very endangered animal was killed, and only did what it knew best. I'd hurt someone for coming into my house and being disrespectful, wouldn't you? These kids got what was coming to them. Please respond, I'd like to know if I'm being too harsh and see if others agree or disagree.

  6. Hi Lauren,

    I do not think you are being too harsh.

    Has there been any substantiated proof that these guys were provoking and/or teasing the tiger? I hope there is because if so, then the only thing they deserve to receive is their medical payments ...

    Consider this, if we didn't have places like this that put wild animals in a human-controlled environment, something like this wouldn't be happening. it might happen out in the wild, but that's to be expected ... there are far too many people out there who believe that once an animal is in a so-called controlled environment, then the animal must be controlled too ... people too often forget that the "wild" part of an animal usually never goes completely away ...

    I have some sympathy for these folks getting injured and one guy getting killed .. but my sympathy is limited.

    It's the zoo's fault .. it's the peoples' fault .. and it's society's fault for allowing places like this to even flourish in the first place ...

    That's my opinion and some think it's too harsh ... :: shrug ::

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts Lauren .. I hope to hear from you more :-)


  7. Hey, thanks for writing back. I found on a website that there was an
    eye witness of them provolking the lion exhibit, and she said that there
    were actually four boys, not three. I pasted a small part of the
    article here in case you didn't want to read the whole one, but here is the
    -Jennifer Miller, who was at the zoo with her husband and two
    children that ill-fated Christmas afternoon, said she saw four young men at
    the big-cat grottos - and three of them were teasing the lions a short
    time before the tiger's bloody rampage that killed 17-year-old Carlos
    Sousa Jr.
    "The boys, especially the older one, were roaring at them. He was
    taunting them," the San Francisco woman said. "They were trying to get
    that lion's attention. ... The lion was bristling, so I just said, 'Come
    on, let's get out of here' because my kids were disturbed by it."-

    I can't agree with you more! I just wish they didn't have such a good
    lawyer lol. Actually read the whole thing, it says there were signs
    reading not to taunt the tiger and that they still have their instincts
    and's very interesting but in the court I don't think this
    stuff matters, and common sense isn't used with a judge.