Tiger kills another tiger at Richmond Zoo

Posted at 1:32 PM, Nov 30, 2012
and last updated 2012-11-30 13:32:51-05

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) - The Metro Richmond Zoo says it will eventually reintroduce two of its tigers back into the same exhibit, but it will be a slow, careful process.

Saturday a young male cat, Kumba, was playing with a 5-year-old female cat, McCoy. During the interactive, Kumba grabbed McCoy her by the neck, killing her.

People were watching the exhibit as it happened, one person even caught it on camera.

The curators were notified immediately, and the zoo's Director Jim Andelin says staff responded in about two and a half minutes, but it was already too late.

A third cat in the enclosure, Amare,  McCoy's sister was separated from Kumba after the attack, and acted as if nothing had happened.

All three cats had been in the same exhibit for about eights months.

Andelin says the keepers are distraught and devastated over the attack.

He says Kumba is not known to be aggressive, he says if anything it was always the other way around.

Employees are continuing to review the attack to determine if Kumba actually did attack the other cat, something set him off, or they were playing very rough and it resulted in McCoy's death.

Kumba is back on exhibit.

The tiger exhibit has been in place at the Richmond Metro Zoo for longer than 16 years, and the director says it has never had anything like this happen in its history.

In the snow pictures shown, the white tiger is McCoy, the one that was killed, the other tiger is McCoy's sister, Amare.