Celebrity Zookeeper Jack Hanna Defends Cincinnati Zoo’s Decision To Kill Gorilla Harambe
Celebrity zookeeper Jack Hanna, who is also director emeritus of Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, believes that the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden made the correct decision by shooting a male gorilla on Saturday when he was dragging around a 3-year-old boy who fell into the gorilla enclosure.
“They made the correct decision,” Hanna told CBS This Morning. Hanna went on to say that he agrees “1,000%,” with the Cincinnati Zoo officials’ decision.
Many animal rights advocates say that Cincinnati Zoo officials should have shot the critically endangered gorilla with a tranquilizer to subdue him instead of killing him with a rifle. But Hanna rejected that idea saying that it would’ve been dangerous to have to wait five to 10 minutes for the effects of the tranquilizer to kick in.
In the video of the little boy being dragged around by the gorilla Harambe in the water, viewers can hear the screams of the little boy in the gorilla enclosure and the shouts of his mom, who was watching.
“You hear the screaming going on. Watch that gorilla’s response … he hears the response, you can see from the face now he’s alarmed,” Hanna said. “I know that dart hits the animal… it’s like a shot but he jumps like this. What would happen if he had a hold of that little boy?”
Zoo officials say the boy somehow climbed under the exhibit’s railing, through wires, over a wall, and then fell 15 feet into the exhibit’s wide ditch.
“Just watch your kids. … I’m sure that the mother here did the best she could. I guess maybe she was doing something else, I don’t know, I wasn’t there,” Hanna said.
The child was taken to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center for minor injuries but is said to be at home now and is doing fine.
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