Killer Tiger Spared After Attack on New Zealand Zoo Keeper

  • Sumatran tiger Oz doesn't pose ongoing risk, council says
  • Indonesian species of big cat is critically endangered

The male Sumatran tiger that attacked and killed a zoo keeper in New Zealand on Sunday won’t be put down, Hamilton City Council said in a statement.

A female zoo keeper with more than 20 years’ experience died at the Hamilton Zoo after being attacked by the tiger, called Oz. Sumatran tigers, a species native to Indonesia, are regarded as critically endangered.

“Although there is an inherent risk for zoo professionals who manage big cats like Oz, there is no wider ongoing risk,” Lance Vervoort, the council’s general manager for community, said in the statement. “There is no reason for us to put Oz down.”

Zoo staff made the decision and have advised government officials who oversee zoo operations, he said.