Tiger mauls zookeeper in Chile

Jul 31, 2012, 10:39 IST | Agencies

A zookeeper, with 25 years of experience, was mauled by a tiger on Sunday in Chile's Santiago zoo. It was shot dead later.

A zookeeper was mauled and seriously injured over the weekend at Chile's Santiago zoo by a white tiger who was later killed, officials said.

The attack occurred around 9 am Sunday at the zoo, which is in the north-central part of the capital and had not yet opened to the public.

"The tiger attacked an official, Jose Silva, who has been doing this work for 25 years and is an expert in this field," Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Rodrigo Perez Mackenna, whose ministry operates the zoo, said.

The tiger, whose name was named Pampa, and had arrived at the zoo seven years ago from Buenos Aires, attacked the zookeeper both inside and outside the enclosure.

Zoo employees shot the tiger, officials said.

"We have to look at what happened to determine exactly what the reasons are why the tiger escaped. There were no failures with the infrastructure," zoo director Mauricio Fabry said.

The zookeeper sustained "an apparently more serious wound in the shoulder", Perez Mackenna said.

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