Zoo’s Killing of Gorilla Holding 4-Year-Old Boy Starts Firestorm

The Cincinnati Zoo is defending its actions after a 4-year-old boy breached the barrier of a 17-year-old silverback western lowland gorilla’s enclosure. The boy fell into the 420-pound gorilla’s moat, and Harambe started to drag the boy through the water. The zoo’s response team decided that the only way to save the child was to shoot and kill the critically endangered gorilla, and said a tranquilizer would have taken too long to take effect and would have agitated the gorilla. The boy was rushed to the hospital and expected to recover, but the situation has prompted outrage from animal rights advocates and others who blame the mother for negligence. Zoo director Thane Maynard said that although the zoo is heartbroken over the loss of Harambe, they had no choice but to shoot him to save the boy. — Read it at The New York Times

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