Harambe the gorilla needed to be shot and killed at the Cincinnati Zoo — otherwise the little boy who fell into his enclosure would’ve lost his life, according to famous zookeeper, Jack Hanna. Find out why he’s defending the zoo’s decision to kill the endangered animal here.
Jack Hanna is the latest wildlife expert to weigh in on the Cincinnati Zoo gorilla controversy. The zoo has faced major backlash for shooting and killing a 400 lb. animal after a 4-year-old boy fell into its habitat, but Jack says the staff had absolutely no choice — it was either the gorilla’s life….or the kid’s.
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“Having worked with these animals for 35 years, I’ve seen them take a green coconut, which you can’t even bust open with a sledgehammer, and squish it,” Jack explains. “You’re dealing with human life or animal life here, so what is the decision? I think it’s very simple to figure that out.”
A shocking video from the May 28 incident shows the boy being dragged around by Harambe, and while it features sweet moments, too, Jack reveals that the situation was just too dangerous to let the gorilla live. Many have argued, though, that the staff could’ve just tranquilized Harambe, but there’s a reason that also wouldn’t have worked.
“Once that dart would go into that beautiful, big Silverback male…what’s he going to do with a child right there?” he says. “The power that animal has is beyond comprehension. They’re a magnificent creature. There’s no doubt in my mind that that child would not be here today if they hadn’t made that decision at the Cincinnati Zoo…a dart takes too long. The child would not have had a chance.”
These sentiments are the same as those made by the zoo’s director in a press conference on May 30. “[The gorilla] was acting erratically. He was disoriented,” Thane Maynard explained. “It’s due to his strength, that’s where the danger was.”
Meanwhile, former Animal Planet host Jeff Corwin has also defended the zoo’s decision, and placed the blame on the young boy’s parents for not keeping a close eye on him. “Ultimately, there has to be some personal responsibility,” he ranted. “You’re there with your kids, enjoy the moment, but you’re responsible for your family and their actions.”
Do you think the gorilla should’ve been shot, HollywoodLifers?