One woman in Toronto jumped into a tiger pen in a zoo just to retrieve her hat, a new viral video shows.
The footage, posted on YouTube, shows a woman climbing over a tiger exhibit fence at the Toronto Zoo. A Sumatran tiger, enclosed by an interior fence, is seemingly agitated, walking back and forth and perhaps preparing to attack. The woman, after retrieving her hat, is able to climb back to safety.
Jennifer Tracey, a senior director at the Toronto Zoo, said the woman may not have been in danger from a tiger attack because of the interior barrier, but the zoo visitor still should not have jumped in.
The staff in charge of the tiger pen were away when the incident happened. Tracey, however, advised visitors who drop an item into restricted areas to look for other authorized personnel to assist them.
"The barriers are there for a reason. They're not only there for the visitors, but they're also there to protect the animals in our care," Tracey said.
The tiger, named Hari, may have been startled when someone other than the zookeeper was approaching the pen, but it is now said to be fine after the "excitement."
Toronto Zoo officials are now investigating the incident but have yet to identify the woman in the clip.
Tracey is calling on all those who witnessed the incident to come forward and help them in the investigation. They should immediately inform zoo officials of such acts. Anyone who is caught breaching or violating rules on animal enclosures could be charged with trespassing or be banned from the zoo.
Setting a Bad Example
Aside from possibly endangering her life, the woman also set a bad example to other visitors. Some onlookers were enraged by the woman's actions. In the video, witnesses can be heard scolding the woman for her reckless behavior, saying: "You're a bad example for everyone else's kids."
Concerns over a possible tiger attack in a zoo may have been fueled by a previous incident in Florida, where a 13-year-old male Malayan tiger mauled to death zookeeper Stacey Konwiser as she was preparing the night house.
Watch the full video of the Toronto Zoo incident below:
Photo: Brian McKay | Flickr