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Swedish flamingoes massacred in frenzied anteater attack

Swedish flamingoes massacred in frenzied anteater attack

Published: 05 Apr 2011 12:10 GMT+02:00
Updated: 05 Apr 2011 12:10 GMT+02:00

A flock of ten flamingoes have met a brutal end at a zoo in Eskilstuna in eastern Sweden after a curious anteater broke into their compound and clawed them to death, leaving a further five birds nursing injuries.

"It is not as dramatic as it sounds. The anteater panicked when the birds cackled and flapped their wings and it struck back," Helena Olsson at the Parken Zoo told The Local on Tuesday.

"The anteater is not a meat-eater, unless you consider ants meat, but when it feels threatened, it will defend itself," she said.

Olsson said that the South American animal, whose claws she said are strong enough to damage concrete, became curious and managed to pull apart the fence separating their pens and enter the enclosure holding the long-legged birds.

"The birds are very frail and the anteater is very strong," she said.

Zoo wardens reacted swiftly to the commotion to put a halt to the one-sided slaughter, Helena Olsson said, furthermore confirming that the fence has been repaired in a bid to avert a repeat.

Aside from the ten fatalities a further five birds were injured in the incident but they are expected to make a full recovery.

Parken Zoo keeps a pair of anteaters, described on the zoo's homepage as "like no other" with its "60 centimetre long tongue, big claws, shaggy coat and bushy tail".

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:09 April 5, 2011 by pacfactor
All Zoo's should be closed!
15:39 April 5, 2011 by Tanskalainen
Great news! Flamingos are disgusting.
16:00 April 5, 2011 by BrittInSweden
@pacfactor

And the animals should be put where?

How about the endangered species the zoo's are working to re-populate? Just let a species go extinct perhaps?
16:40 April 5, 2011 by millionmileman
Anteaters are dangerous and was also for Erik Carlsson during The African Safari Rally. He was close to winning several times and in 1963 he had a lead of more than an hour, so he decided to take it easy, avoiding all risks. On the last night in the blackest of African nights a strange animal emerged from the elephant grass and he hit it head on. For a while he was too scared to get out and see what it was. It turned out to be a huge anteater. The only consolation was that the organizers made a hat for him out of the anteater's skin.

This was Erik and Saab's most frustrating of all Rallies.
17:04 April 5, 2011 by comentatir
Is this a photo of a half panda bear half anteater creature?

Does anyone else see the panda in the photo?
19:06 April 5, 2011 by Muff
@comentatir

Now I see it! @__@
20:08 April 5, 2011 by Cutimap
@comentatir

I see it right away but as it's impossible, I figure out it should be the front leg of the anteater
22:46 April 5, 2011 by pacfactor
@BS

You are barking up the wrong tree.

Have dedicated specialist facilitys set up, at or near the animal in questions enviroment, that take care of individual species that are near extinction with the view to release them back into the wild?

Not a Zoo just for the sake of it with animals who would never co habitate anywhere near each other in the wild, fenced in to provide enjoyment for paying customers to gawk at!
07:26 April 6, 2011 by Zhorka
Jail management for negligence!
08:54 April 6, 2011 by RobinHood
Jail management for negligence with the wierd, half-panda, half-anteater, flamingo shredding creature! Then let the flamingoes poop on them. Then leave them naked outside in the sunshine and let the hole in the ozone layer, and Japanese radiation peel off their skin.

But do it next year. As Khan says, revenge is a dish best served cold.
15:47 April 6, 2011 by HanzChristian
Anteater decides: 'all pink birds must die! They are way too frivolous..'
12:11 April 8, 2011 by wenddiver
Oh sure blame the Ant Eater, like nobody else has ever seen a Pink Flamingo lawn ornament and completely lost it and attacked the thing. It was just doing what any sane animal would do.
14:15 April 8, 2011 by tadchem
Any animal will defend itself if it feels threatened. Unlike lawn ornaments, large birds defend themelves with wing-flapping, which can confuse a predator. Usually this will scare off a threat.

Anteaters are adapted to claw their way into termite mounds, which can be as hard as rock. Anteaters can't run, but they can counterattack. The swamp fowl had no chance.

Unfortunately the anteater will never know what flamingoes taste like.
21:11 April 8, 2011 by Coolsitter
Helena Olsson at Parken Zoo in Eskilstuna thinks "it is not as dramatic as it sounds". I beg to differ. 10 dead birds and five injured is dramatic. What kind of Zoo is this where fences can be broken down this easy? Wouldn´t you think, that if the Zoo harbour an animal that can, as Miss Olsson says, "damage concrete", it should be kept inside a much stronger fence than it has been?

I agree, it is negligence.
01:54 April 11, 2011 by Da Goat
step back from the picture or look at the thumbnail looks like a panda is standing in front of the anteater!

perhaps they should take the picture from the other side! LOL
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