• Sweden edition
Expert slams zoo after new wolf attack details

Expert slams zoo after new wolf attack details

Published: 19 Jun 2012 11:02 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Jun 2012 11:02 GMT+02:00

A wolf expert has lashed out against the Kolmården zoo after new revelations about the death of the woman who was attacked by a pack of wolves on Sunday.

The woman is believed to have entered the enclosure alone, and been with the wolves up to one hour before her colleagues discovered that she was missing.

Wolf expert Olof Liberg has spoken out against the zoo.

“It’s quite obvious that one of the problems was that she went in alone. It took time to find her, and this time may have been critical,” he told the TT news agency.

“I would have expected that the zoo had clear routines for what to do if someone got injured in the wolf enclosure,” said Liberg, adding that someone should always be nearby and ready to raise the alarm if needed.

Meanwhile, a police officer told the Aftonbladet newspaper that the woman was knocked over and dragged away by the wolves.

“We found clothes and personal belongings strewn over the whole enclosure,” the source said.

Mats Höggren, head of the zoo, has stood by his colleague’s actions, claiming they were standard procedure, and that the 30-year-old had looked after the wolves for three years.

According to Dagens Nyheter, there hasn’t been a fatal wolf attack in Sweden since the 1820’s when a wolf killed nine people, most of whom were young children, in County Gästrikland in eastern Sweden.

With no witnesses or video evidence of the attack, Anders Eriksson, a specialist in forensic medicine, has commented on the difficulty of investigating the case.

“As there’ve been so few fatal wild animal attacks in Sweden, it’s hard to draw any conclusions for how the attack could have happened,” he told Expressen.

Meanwhile, the zoo’s management has been reported to the police for manslaughter by Stig Engdahl, 70, who became a national celebrity in 2003 after he was convicted of shooting a wolf that had attacked his sheep.

“I think it’s manslaughter. If they’re allowing another person to go in with the wolves, they’re putting that person’s life in danger. I think it’s time to put a stop to this wolf circus in Sweden,” Engdahl told Aftonbladet.

TT/The Local/og


The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

11:46 June 19, 2012 by Garry Jones
Little mistake on the date there, its the 1820's not the 1920's...

These are all the known wolf on human kills in Sweden since 1727.

Oluf Swensson, 9, killed on 9th February 1727

Jon Svensson, 4.5, killed on 17 December 1727.

Jon Ersson, 9, killed on 6th Januari 1728

Borta Johansdotter 12, killed on 3rd August 1731

Nils Nilsson, 8, killed in January 1763

The "Gysinge Wolf" killed 9 kids under 20 between 30th December 1820 and 27th Mars 1821

This wolf had been raised in captivity.

Since 27th March 1821 nobody has been killed by a wolf in Sweden until this weekend

It appears to me that they are making a big mistake by letting these wolves live. They have now tasted human blood and will want more. The Gysinge Wolf killed 8 more after its first victim and also attacked another 22 who survived. Note also it was not a wolf of the wild.

In a Kent (UK) zoo in 1980, zookeeper Brian Stocks was killed by a tiger. The zoo owner said it was a freak accident and did not have the Tiger (Zeya) put down. A short time after another zookeeper - Bob Wilson - was mauled to death by the same tigress. Mr Aspinall, the zoo owner, then shot Zeya dead. Another tiger in Zeya family then killed another zookeeper (Trevor Smith).

Surely the "taste for blood" aspect is not lost on Sweden? These wolves are going to want more of the same? Is it smart to let them live?
11:49 June 19, 2012 by gpafledthis
Yes worrisome - IF darwinism is allowed to propagate there will be far fewer sweedies to propagate !! The "masochism tango" should become the native(?) dance of sweden !! In malmo they would "scalp" tickets to the event !!
12:02 June 19, 2012 by johan rebel
No way these wolves should be killed. They are not guilty of any wrongdoing, and residing in an enclosure they are no threat to the general public.

Furthermore, this could prove a financial boon for Kolmården, lots of people will want to come and see the man-eating wolves.

I the early 90s, I knew a (wild, not captive) lioness in South Africa nicknamed "waiter eater", for obvious reasons. Apart from the waiter's family, nobody wanted her put down, and she wasn't.
14:10 June 19, 2012 by entry
Release the wolves in Gamla Stan or Uppsala and we will eagerly await the positive economic and social benefits in the newspapers in Göteborg.
14:30 June 19, 2012 by k2kats
If I was held captive by a different species that didn't understand my language, I might eventually lash out too.

Tragically, in this case, that pent up anger was vented on someone who appeared to genuinely care for the wolves.

It is unconscionable that any zoo would claim ignorance of this very real potential. At the very least, there should be a buddy system.
14:31 June 19, 2012 by Borilla
@Garry Jones

The only "taste for blood" seems to be yours.Killing the wolves because they did what was natural is not an answer. The answer is doing what should have been done originally, stay away from the wolves. The longer this story plays out, the more it looks like negligence on the part of both the zoo and the deceased. The deceased should have known better than to be alone with the wolves and the zoo should have rules in place to insure things like this don't happen. Typical Swedish bureaucratic reaction - despite obvious failure, deny, deny, deny.
14:38 June 19, 2012 by gpafledthis
Too sad !! Clearly looking for the vaunted "sweedie meatballs" sorry even wolves can't tell male from female swede too often anymore !!
01:40 June 20, 2012 by strixy
This is what happens when people first think wolves are pets and then run around like headless chickens because they have to learn the truth the painful way.

Most probably the woman was challenged by one of the wolves and failed to show submission or her posture prompted the pack to initiate an attack over food (eg. she tried to withold food etc).

Wichever way you look at this, it's not the wolves' fault. They are wild animals and should be respected and treated as such.
09:36 June 20, 2012 by B Slick
People must stop thinking of wolves as house pet dogs!! This includes zoos and the people who work there!!
21:00 June 21, 2012 by tadchem
"there hasn't been a fatal wolf attack in Sweden since the 1820's when a wolf killed nine people"

It has tken 190 years for the zookeepers to get stupid again.
Today's headlines
Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off TV
Grossed out Ica woman at Easter dinner. Screengrab from Ica

Ica pulls contested Easter commercial off TV

A Swedish supermarket has decided to withdraw its Easter commercial, after Christians complained it made a mockery of communion - "They crossed the line." Sweden's advertising watchdog will now look into the case. READ () »

Dismemberment killer gets sentence cut
The search and rescue operation in northern Sweden. File photo: TT

Dismemberment killer gets sentence cut

The 22-year-old man convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend in northern Sweden had his sentence reduced on Wednesday, in part due to his "peculiar personality". READ () »

School gas leak sends 25 to hospital

School gas leak sends 25 to hospital

An elementary school in southern Sweden was evacuated on Wednesday and dozens of pupils were taken to hospital after the smell of gas spread through the rooms. READ () »

Swedes vote for country's nicest cock
The Flymen Church weathercock in all its newly gilded glory. Photo: TT

Swedes vote for country's nicest cock

A Swedish churchwarden has reacted with joy upon finding out the parish has Sweden's nicest weathercock. READ () »

Greens push rich tax to finance schools
Per Bolund of The Greens. File photo: TT

Greens push rich tax to finance schools

Sweden's third largest party The Greens revealed its shadow budget on Wednesday, targeting schools and youth employment. High earners would have to pitch in more. READ () »

Holiday status updates 'not a burglary risk'
Ibiza, you say? File photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Holiday status updates 'not a burglary risk'

Mythbusting Swedish researchers have found no link between gushing about your upcoming holiday online and returning to an emptied house. They told The Local that a trip to Ikea could be much more dangerous. READ () »

Woman charged after accusing beggar of theft
The people in this picture are not those from the story. Photo: TT

Woman charged after accusing beggar of theft

A woman in Gothenburg who accused a beggar of robbing her has been charged with fraud and false accusations. READ () »

Swedish royals set baptism date for princess
Photo: Kungahuset

Swedish royals set baptism date for princess

Sweden's royal family has set the date for the baptism of Princess Leonore. READ () »

The Local List
Evidence Game of Thrones is set in Sweden

Evidence Game of Thrones is set in Sweden

With Swedish Game of Thrones fans frothing at the mouth at the season four premiere, The Local revisits its list of ten reasons why the hit books and show are (probably) based in Sweden. READ () »

'Baffling' Swedish raid on German sub makers
The Kockums Malmö shipyard and FMV headquarters. Files: TT

'Baffling' Swedish raid on German sub makers

After the Swedish military raided the Malmö premises of German defence giant Thyssen Krupp, a military expert tells The Local why recent Russian aggression means Sweden's Saab needs to take control of national submarine production. READ () »

Who's the prime minister's heir?
Alfie Atkins
Are children's books the key to families integrating in Sweden?
'Sweden Dem protests cater to party's martyr image'
'Swedish research grants were fantastic, but now it's like Australia'
Only in Sweden: The ten problems you'd never encounter elsewhere
Swedes stopped to take my picture, but didn't look me in the eyes
Business & Money
A swipe of the hand replaced cash and cards in Lund
Video: Oliver Gee finds out how to embrace The Swedish Hug
Abba duo hints at reunion
Flash mobs hug it out across Sweden
People-watching April 11-13
Swedes to give six-hour workday a go
Aussie choir member wows Abba in Sweden
Stockholm magic a surprise YouTube hit
Gallery: The Local's Property of the Week
Swedes find 200-year-old gravestone in living room
Stockholm School of Economics
Sponsored Article
Why a bachelor's degree is no longer enough
Deepti Vashisht
Deepti Vashisht dissects the magic of Sweden's personal ID number
Ten signs you've been in Sweden too long
Jimi Fritze heard every word when doctors discussed taking his organs
A Swedish farmer explains why the new bestiality ban is 'pointless'
'Blondes have more brains': Swedish study
VIDEO: Leaked 'Save Slussen' film goes viral
People-watching, March 28-30
Sponsored Article
Learning Swedish the easy way
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Blog Update: The Diplomatic Dispatch

28 October 15:16

The Green Growth Group Summit »

"Today on the 28 October in Brussels, a large group of key EU Ministers and business people, including UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Edward Davey, and Swedish Environment Minister Lena Ek, will meet to discuss green growth. They all have a stake in resolving a challenge which, although it is crucial..." READ »

jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit: