Friday, January 18, 2008

Siberian Tiger (Tatiana)


Siberian Tiger (Tatiana), originally uploaded by soachs.

FINALLY. . . THE TRUTH!!

When I read the news update today about this horrible situation at the San Francisco Zoo, I broke out in tears.. . . tears of joy for Tatiana - FINALLY, THE TRUTH! . . tears of pain for the loss of our beautiful tiger sister. I knew in my heart that the truth would come out.

Tatiana should NOT have died. I don't know if I will get in trouble for 'reprinting' this news article, but I feel so strongly about this, I just had to put it here.. . . so. . .here it is. . .

Reported on CNN website tonight:

Police: Tiger attack victim was drinking, admitted taunting

Search warrant affidavit obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle

Paul Dhaliwal told victim's dad the three yelled, waved but didn't throw anything

Toxicology results showed the three had alcohol, marijuana in their systems

Police: The three climbed off railing, heard noise, "and the tiger was jumping out"

SAN FRANCISCO, California (AP) -- One of the three victims of San Francisco Zoo tiger attack was intoxicated and admitted to yelling and waving at the animal while standing atop the railing of the big cat enclosure, police said in court documents filed Thursday.

Tatiana, a 350-pound Siberian tiger, killed one young man and injured two others before being killed.

Paul Dhaliwal, 19, told the father of Carlos Sousa Jr., 17, who was killed, that the three yelled and waved at the tiger but insisted they never threw anything into its pen to provoke the cat, according to a search warrant affidavit obtained by the San Francisco Chronicle.

"As a result of this investigation, (police believe) that the tiger may have been taunted/agitated by its eventual victims," according to Inspector Valerie Matthews, who prepared the affidavit. Police believe that "this factor contributed to the tiger escaping from its enclosure and attacking its victims," she said.

Sousa's father, Carlos Sousa Sr., said Dhaliwal told him the three stood on a 3-foot-tall metal railing a few feet from the edge of the tiger moat. "When they got down they heard a noise in the bushes, and the tiger was jumping out of the bushes on him (Paul Dhaliwal)," the documents said.

Police found a partial shoe print that matched Paul Dhaliwal's on top of the railing, Matthews said in the documents. Watch how a victim's desperate 911 call was handled »

The affidavit also cites multiple reports of a group of young men taunting animals at the zoo, the Chronicle reported.

Mark Geragos, an attorney for the Dhaliwal brothers, did not immediately return a call late Thursday by The Associated Press for comment. He has repeatedly said they did not taunt the tiger.

A call to Sousa also wasn't returned.

Toxicology results for Dhaliwal showed that his blood alcohol level was 0.16 -- twice the legal limit for driving, according to the affidavit. His 24-year-old brother Kulbir Dhaliwal and Sousa also had alcohol in their blood but within the legal limit, Matthews wrote.

All three also had marijuana in their systems, Matthews said. Kulbir Dhaliwal told police that the three had smoked pot and each had "a couple shots of vodka" before leaving San Jose for the zoo on Christmas Day the affidavit said.

Police found a small amount of marijuana in Kulbir Dhaliwal's 2002 BMW, which the victims rode to the zoo, as well as a partially filled bottle of vodka, according to court documents.

Investigators also recovered messages and images from the cell phones, but apparently nothing incriminating in connection with the tiger attack, the Chronicle reported.

Sam Singer, a spokesman for the zoo, said he had not seen the documents but believed the victims did taunt the animal, even though they claim they hadn't.

"Those brothers painted a completely different picture to the public and the press," Singer said. "Now it's starting to come out that what they said is not true."

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Paws up and tongue out!!

Paws up and tongue out!! - 057 (by RoxandaBear) Tai's snow aria! 058 (by RoxandaBear)

January 17, 2008 was a very good day at the National Zoo Panda House. The snow flakes fell large and many, and Tai Shan just could not resist having a ball out there. He stood up on his hind feet waving his front paws in the air with his head up and mouth open wide to catch those fat snowflakes falling. What a wonderful, fun-loving kid his is! Remember doing that when you were a child?

I missed most of the action due to being at work, but I just knew that once I got home there would be lots of photos and videos posted for me to peruse, and sure enough, like a kid on Christmas morning, I was not to be disapointed. This one was taken by RoxandaBear on Flickr who lives close enough to the zoo to have braved the cold and snow (and has on more than one occasion, knowing that the best of the pandas can be seen on those wet, cold, marvelous days). Check out her photo stream for more, if you've a mind to.

Monday, January 7, 2008

5 month old baby panda Zhen Zhen


5 month old baby panda Zhen Zhen, originally uploaded by kjdrill.

OMG! Could there be anything cutier than this? A fabulous west coast photographer I 'know' visited the San Diego Zoo over this past weekend and captured some absolutely STUNNING photos of our baby 'Zoom Zoom' outside practicing her climbing. Visit his Flickr photo thread to see more. (see link under the photo)

Little Zhen Zhen is now 5 months old. She's getting stronger and more confident by the hour it seems. This photo is adorable!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Superstar.


Superstar., originally uploaded by d0_0b.

While on my online western lowland gorilla trek recently, I came across this photo on flickr. How interesting that she is looking right into the camera! Beautiful photo and I just had to 'put' it some where. Thank-you d0_0b whoever you are. I love your photo!