Escape bid leopard shot dead|jon_downes|jon@cfz.org.uk|09/24/03 at 18:37:27|jon_downes|xx|0|217.42.205.225|BBC News
23rd September 2003



A leopard has been shot dead by a zookeeper in a failed attempt to
tranquilise it as the animal tried to get out of its cage.
Jade, a three-year-old Amur leopard, failed to wake up after being
shot with a tranquiliser dart as she squeezed through a roofing net.

Amur was being introduced to the new leopard enclosure at Marwell
Zoological Park in Winchester, Hampshire, on Monday when the incident
happened.

She climbed a tree inside the cage and managed to push through an
opening in the roof.

A spokesman for the zoo said the general curator then fired a dart to
knock Jade out so she could be returned to her home cage, but she
never recovered.

'Full investigation'

The zoo has called off Saturday's grand opening of the new big cats
cage and managers have begun an investigation into the death.

The incident happened before doors had opened for the day.

Jade arrived at Marwell last year, after being born at Cricket St.
Thomas in Somerset.

A statement from the zoo said: "Sadly the animal did not recover from
the anaesthetic and subsequently died.

"At no time did the animal leave the enclosure area and the situation
was immediately contained.

"A full internal investigation into the incident is currently taking
place."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/hampshire/dorset/3132124.stm
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