Chimp Kills Baby Chimp at LA Zoo as Visitors WATCH!
Baby Chimp Mauled to Death by Adult Male Chimpanzee
This is absolutely horrific.
A male chimpanzee killed a baby chimp at the Los Angeles zoo -- while visitors watched.
In a horrendous display of the circle of life, the adult male bashed the three-month-old baby chimp to death in front of 100 onlookers on Tuesday.
The baby's mom, Gracie, is no doubt suffering from this tragic loss, as the Los Angeles Times notes that male chimps in the wild will kill offspring of rival males.
You have to wonder why the male and baby weren't kept in separate enclosures then.
The scene was at once horrifying and heartbreaking, with one visitor saying, "All I heard was screaming" from the chimp enclosure.
Staff members were not allowed to enter the enclosure until the following day for their own safety, according to CBS. The chimpanzee habitat was open for visitors on Wednesday.
Gracie reportedly held her baby through the night. This was the first chimp born at the zoo since 1999.
The zoo released a statement, explaining: "Chimpanzee behavior can sometimes be aggressive and violent, and the zoo is sorry that visitors had to be exposed to this. It's heartbreaking, a tragic loss for the zoo and especially for the Great Ape Team who have worked diligently to care for the infant and its mother since its birth."
Stephen Zawistowski, executive vice president for national programs and science adviser for The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, noted, "The irony here is that for many, many years in zoos, baby primates were taken away from their mothers and bottle-fed to keep them safe and make sure they survived. Then we ended up with generations of chimps that were incompetent socially. They didn't know how to be mothers. They didn't know how to be socially appropriate."
Read: Dog Rescued by Dolphins
Zawistowski further explained that mothers could keep their babies with "some males around," noting, "More often than not, everything seems to work out. But sometimes this will lead to tragic circumstances."