NEWS

Marius The Giraffe Was Offered A Spot At Quebec Zoo

02/11/2014 07:42 EST | Updated 04/13/2014 05:59 EDT
ASSOCIATED PRESS
Marius, a male giraffe, lies dead before being dissected, after he was put down at Copenhagen Zoo on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014. Copenhagen Zoo turned down offers from other zoos and 500,000 euros ($680,000) from a private individual to save the life of a healthy giraffe before killing and slaughtering it Sunday to follow inbreeding recommendations made by a European association. The 2-year-old male giraffe, named Marius, was put down using a bolt pistol and its meat will be fed to carnivores at the zoo, spokesman Tobias Stenbaek Bro said. Visitors, including children, were invited to watch while the giraffe was dissected. (AP Photo/POLFOTO, Peter Hove Olesen) DENMARK OUT
Quebec's Parc Safari says it was one many organizations that tried to save Marius the giraffe from being killed at a Danish zoo, but it's offer, along with the others, was ignored.

Assistant curator Francis Lavigne, said that when he heard about the decision to kill Marius, he tried to get in touch with the zoo.

“I tried to call with no answer. I know our president tried also to send an email, tried to contact them too ... We could have taken that giraffe.”

Despite the offers from zoos like Parc Safari, as well as one individual who wanted to buy the giraffe for 500,000 euros (about $750,000 Cdn), the Copenhagen Zoo went ahead with its plans.

The zoo said Marius' death was necessary in order to prevent inbreeding. The two-year-old male was killed on Sunday using a bolt pistol.

Then, in a move that prompted another wave of controversy, the zoo invited members of the public to watch while the giraffe was skinned and fed to the lions.

“I don't think, personally, it`s something that kids need to see,” Lavigne said.

“If they don't understand what's going on, I don't necessarily approve, but it is something that could be educational for veterinarians.”

Lavigne said the giraffe died needlessly.

“Every time an animal is born, we make sure before the baby is made by the parents that either we're going to take care of it for its entire life or another Canadian institution or institution in the world is going to take it.”

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