Deer jumps in to Lion Exhibit at the National Zoo DC





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Uploaded on Nov 11, 2009

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I saw a story about a wild deer breaking into the lion exhibit at the Smithsonian Park National Zoo on WashingtonPost.com. After watching the dramatic YouTube video, I ventured over to the zoo. Lucky for me, Fox5 was doing an interview with the zoo staff about the deer. I decided to take my chances and ask the zoo's PR representatives if they would also go on camera for me.

They immediately agreed to help me. I learned that the lionesses have no blood on their paws, at least not directly. They left the deer alone as soon as they were called back into their enclosure. The PR rep told me that they are highly trained. They weren't allowed to finish their hunt main because the deer might spread diseases to the animals.

The zoo sees a host of visitors wandering in from Rock Creek Park. Raccoons, fox, squirrels and pigeons frequently make their way into the exhibits, but this is the first time the lions had the chance to hunt live prey.

At one point, the deer made an escape and jumped into the water cheered on by many onlookers. However, when the vets took the injured young animal in to be treated, it couldn't be saved. The vets euthanized the deer that night.

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