The tragic story behind the attack on three tiger keepers by one of the “30 tigers in the world. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The tragic story behind the attack on three tiger keepers by one of the “30 tigers in the world.

A keeper at Nasu Safari Park in Tochigi Prefecture was bitten all over his body, suffered a head fracture, and lost his right wrist when he tried to retrieve his tranquilizer gun but failed to do so in time. ......

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At 8:30 in the morning of January 5, 2010, three keepers were attacked by a tiger at the Nasu Safari Park in Nasu-machi, Tochigi Prefecture. The tiger that attacked them was a male tiger named Volta, which is about 2 meters long and weighs over 150 kilograms. It is a rare variant of the Bengal tiger, of which there are about 3,000 in the world, and only about 30 are currently kept in captivity.

The Volta is a rare species called the “Golden Tabby Tiger” with golden fur.

Originally, voltaic animals are kept in the animal house and the doors are locked. It was in the corridor outside the animal house that the keeper was attacked. A female keeper was preparing to open the park when she encountered the volta outside the animal house. Two others rushed after her to help her and were attacked. They were badly injured, with bites all over their bodies and a fractured head. One of them lost his right wrist,” said a reporter from a national newspaper.

This is the third time that a similar accident has occurred. This is the third time a similar accident has occurred. A keeper who works at the zoo explains what happened.

The keepers are trained to use tranquilizers to put the animals to sleep if they are attacked by fierce animals. However, in this case, the tiger and I were very close when we encountered it, and it attacked us just as we met. He didn’t have time to go for the tranquilizer gun.”

Volta was the park’s idol tiger. Why did a tiger that was used to people attack a keeper? Takeshi Shirawa, a representative of Rep Japan, who is an expert on the ecology of tigers and other animals, examines the situation.

If it really wanted to attack, it would have inflicted a fatal wound with a single blow. It is likely that the animal encountered a person with whom it does not normally come into direct contact and jostled with him. The other person screamed, and more people came. It may have been startled and bitten in self-defense, resulting in serious injuries. I’m wondering what will happen to Volta, but the manager says it’s not the tiger’s fault, so I don’t think they’ll kill him.

At present, the Tochigi Prefectural Police Headquarters is conducting a joint investigation with the Nasushiobara Police Department.

The park’s breeding manual stipulates that the tigers should be kept in the animal house at night for visual confirmation. However, it seems that the person in charge the day before failed to do so. The authorities are investigating the incident on suspicion of professional negligence.

For the sake of the keepers and the innocent animals, thorough measures to prevent a recurrence are required.

Nasu Safari Park on the day of the accident. The park is currently closed due to the accident. There is no timetable for reopening the park.
On January 7, the Tochigi Prefectural Police raided the park. The park is currently deserted, with some employees refraining from going to work.

From the January 28, 2022 issue of FRIDAY

  • Photo Saii (first photo) Kyodo News (second and third photos)

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