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Camel kills wild ass at Helsinki Zoo


Camel kills wild ass at Helsinki Zoo
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A Bactrian camel killed a wild ass or kulan at the Helsinki Zoo yesterday - Wednesday. Although none of the zoo's staff was present, some passers-by witnessed the chain of events.
      "Apparently the arrogant donkey started the fight", said Zoo Director Seppo Turunen.
      "The camel bit into the kulan’s muzzle, killing it almost instantaneously", Turunen states.
      The exact cause of death will be revealed after further investigations. The camel was not injured.
     
Both animals were males, and Turunen believes that this confrontation was a sporadic incident caused by the kulan’s raging hormones and consequent disturbed behaviour.
      "All other animals in the enclosure are female, and they stayed calm. The females understand that they had better stay out of things when males are fighting", notes Turunen.
      At the Helsinki Zoo, the camels and kulans - of a race of the Asian Wild Ass family - live in a shared enclosure. The dead kulan was the newest animal in the pen, having lived there only since May.
     
The remaining three kulan females were put in a separate pen, while the camel couple remained in the enclosure where the killing had occurred.
      At 7.00 p.m. the killer camel looked calm, and there were no signs of the fight to be seen any more. The camel - of the two-humped variety - stretched himself in his pen, rubbing his neck against the dried branch of a tree.
      Only a warning note on the fence, saying that the camels bite, was left to remind visitors of the unfortunate incident and encourage them to keep their hands outside the pen. Unlike most slayings that occur among the human population outside the confines of the island zoo, alcohol was not believed to have been a contributory factor.


Links:
  Korkeasaari, Helsinki Zoo

Helsingin Sanomat


  2.8.2007 - TODAY
 Camel kills wild ass at Helsinki Zoo

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