The Eurasian lynx that recently escaped from the Borth Wild Animal Kingdom in Wales was shot dead.
After escaping her enclosure at Borth Wild Animal Kingdom in Ceredigion, Wales, “exhaustive efforts” were being made to recapture the young lynx. A police helicopter with thermal imaging technology, baited traps, and heat-seeking drones among other efforts were employed in the hunt to find to wild cat.
In a statement released on the zoo’s Facebook page, the wildlife park was outraged, “We are truly devastated by the hunting and killing of Lillith last night. For the past three weeks we have been tracking and attempting to catch her in a safe way”
“We have employed 24-hour, on-site help from expert trackers and animal recovery specialists who have been aiding us in our efforts, but she proved to be quite elusive.”
Because Lillith could not be retrieved, the local council, after meeting with veterinary experts, decided that the situation became severe when the lynx strayed into a populated area, deeming it necessary to act decisively and “humanely destroy” the lynx.
“We in no way agreed to or participated in the shooting of our baby Lynx,” stated Tracy Tweedy, co-owner of Borth Animal Kingdom.
“We are truly devastated and outraged that this happened.”
Lillith was believed to have remained in the zoo’s perimeter fence, but she then spotted asleep under a caravan in a local holiday park that was closed for the season.
Mrs Tweedy believes the shooting could have been easily avoided had the council not insisted on following unnecessary protocol, stating “The caravan was boarded in on three sides with decking and all we had to do was sling a net across the back and we would have had her trapped”
“Unfortunately, one of the officials insisted that he needed to photograph her and make a positive ID before we were allowed close. He slipped and fell going up the bank which startled her causing her to run past him and off across the fields.”
When the council agreed on their decision to “destroy” the animal, they managed to locate her within a day and shoot her. Mrs Tweedy responded by asking, “They managed to locate and shoot her within 24 hours so why didn’t they do that at the very beginning and just tranquilise her”
“You do not get to shoot a cat for no reason. She was no threat to anyone. It should never have happened and we will fight them on it every step of the way.”
The man who shot her, Andrew Venables, said he had no option but to shoot the lynx as tranquiliser darts take 15 minutes to take effect, meaning she would have run away, and because it was night time, it would have been difficult to find her.
What a pathetic thing to say. Could they not spend the resources to find the cat after it ran away and eventually fell asleep after 15 minutes? If they managed to find the lynx at night, it had to be through the use of thermal sensors, so they could have tracked her with this technology after she was tranquilised.
According to the park, there have never been any recorded attacks by a lynx on a human, but officials warned that they were wild animals with sharp teeth and claws and ‘will attack if cornered or trapped’.
Of course this all starts with the zoo, who has to take partial blame for letting Lillith escape in the first place, but was this act to ‘destroy’ the poor animal who was just trying to gain its freedom from us really necessary? What do you think?