• Sweden edition
 
SWEDISH ZOO SCANDAL
Zookeeper suspended in dead animal scandal

Zookeeper suspended in dead animal scandal

Published: 19 Oct 2012 17:11 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Oct 2012 17:11 GMT+02:00

In ordering the suspension, Parken Zoo officials cited "incompetent statements" made by head zookeeper Helena Olsson during an exposé documentary in which she denied killing the animals, stating that they had simply been moved to other zoos.

The statements were broadcast on an episode of the TV4 documentary Kalla Fakta (The Cold Facts) which aired on Wednesday night (see embedded video with English subtitles below).

“She has done a good job at Parken but she expressed herself incompetently. The statements Helena Olsson made have damaged the Parken Zoo,” said zoo CEO Torbjörn Bergvall to TV4 news.

Among the dead animals, which were stored en masse in a freezer after having been put down, were endangered Bongo antelopes, rare Congo crocodiles, and a family of pumas.

“Kalla Fakta revealed a number of things that are completely unacceptable for us that we didn’t know about,” Tommy Hamberg, chair of Parken Zoo board of direcdtors, told the TT news agency.

“The manner in which the dead animals were handled and the terrible communication about it was completely unacceptable. These were the biggest disappointments.”

However, Hamberg did not believe the news would affect the zoo in the long term.

“I am quite certain that this did a lot of damage. In the longer term, perhaps in six months when our season begins, things will probably be much better, as we will have shown that we've taken the problem seriously and reacted.”

Meanwhile, another zoo in eastern Sweden has had problems of its own this week, after ex-employees explained how animals were mistreated by the staff and owners.

The Öland Djurpark reportedly underfed its animals, forcing them to live in cramped enclosures, while killing certain animals to make room for more.

One staff member told The Local how a Brazilian aardvark was clubbed to death with a baseball bat.

Later it the week, it emerged that the Öland zoo forced temporary guest workers to live in cramped quarters and eat food donated to the zoo by local grocers that was intended for the animals.

"Saying you wanted to live and eat somewhere else was the equivalent of resigning," former worker Marcin Wilk told Svergies Television (SVT).

According to Wilk, guest workers received 12,000 kronor ($1,800) per month after taxes, half of which was then claimed by the zoo, reportedly to cover the costs of food and lodging.

Other former employees who wished to remain anonymous have told similar stories to other media outlets about adverse working conditions at the zoo.

In the wake of the week's scandals, the Swedish Board of Agriculture (Jordbruksverket) has called a meeting for the 20 parks and zoos that are members of The Swedish Association of Zoos and Aquaria (Svenska djurparksföreningen).

The meeting is scheduled for Friday next week, and aims to “take collective responsibility for the protection of species, animals and disease control”.

Kalla%20fakta%201%20-%20About%20Parken%20Zoo%20(English%20subtitle)

TT/The Local/og

Follow The Local on Twitter

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

20:53 October 19, 2012 by Redbee
What is shocking about this is that the zoo CEO Torbjorn Bergvall states the head zookeeper has done a good job but expressed herself incompetently , bare faced lies would be more to the point . These animals didn't deserve to die like this and all who were complicit in this should be dismissed . Other zoos are also mentioned regarding lack of standards of animal care so lets hope all the Swedish zoos are reguarly checked and the animals treated with kindess and respect
04:44 October 20, 2012 by Programmeny
What in the world is an African antelope doing in Sweden? They shouldn't even be here. I would ban zoos of African animals altogether.
14:50 October 20, 2012 by PaxPacis
I would ban zoos altogether.
Today's headlines
Getinge Floods
Swedish floods spread wider as rain continues
Photo: Anders Andersson/TT

Swedish floods spread wider as rain continues

UPDATED: The flood in southern Sweden spread further on Wednesday, with forecasters predicting rain all week. With the defence minister on the scene, officials have warned that up to 8,000 households risk evacuation. READ  

Top ministers count cost of 'less secure world'
Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

Top ministers count cost of 'less secure world'

Foreign and Finance Ministers Carl Bildt and Anders Borg held a press conference on Wednesday to discuss how Sweden was being affected by a "less secure" world, and how it would foot the bill for a growing influx of refugees. READ  

Volvo profits saved by Chinese devotion
Volvo Cars chief executive Håkan Samuelsson. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Volvo profits saved by Chinese devotion

The now Chinese-owned Volvo Car Group announced a return to profits on Wednesday - thanks to the Swedish brand's popularity in China. READ  

Ikea founder gives giant donation to hometown

Ikea founder gives giant donation to hometown

Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad donated a gift to his hometown on Wednesday to the tune of 53 million kronor ($7.7 million). The cash is to be used for developing the area. READ  

Police hunt masked thief after Stockholm fire
Photo: Fanni Olin Dahl/TT

Police hunt masked thief after Stockholm fire

The Slussen tunnel in Stockholm began billowing out black smoke on Wednesday afternoon. Police believe that the fire was connected to an attempted robbery earlier in the day. READ  

Elections 2014
Parties duel as refugee costs rocket
Photos: TT

Parties duel as refugee costs rocket

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and opposition leader Stefan Löfven clashed on Wednesday after the Migration Board asked for more money to handle Sweden's influx of refugees. READ  

Introducing: Sweden's five minority languages
The Sami in northern Sweden. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Introducing: Sweden's five minority languages

Did you know there are five official minority languages in Sweden? The Local's Isabela Vrba finds out what they are, how they're protected, and what rights their speakers have. READ  

Swedish docs puzzled by deformed penis trend

Swedish docs puzzled by deformed penis trend

More and more Swedish boys are born with deformed penises, and researchers are uncertain exactly what's behind the increase. READ  

The Local List
What Sweden means to you in just one Tweet
Photos: Shutterstock/Imagebank Sweden

What Sweden means to you in just one Tweet

The Local Sweden has been asking readers to squeeze their view of Sweden into just 140 characters or less. Here's what you came up with up for #SwedeninaTweet. READ  

Sweden and the Bronx
Swedes celebrate 375th anniversary of the Bronx
The Bronx. Photo:Shutterstock.

Swedes celebrate 375th anniversary of the Bronx

What do the Bronx and Sweden have in common? More than an affiliation with the Yankees, it turns out. And one small Swedish town is about to make that abundantly clear. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »

 

17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Gallery
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
National
Food agency warns girls: 'Don't eat stinky fish'
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Gallery
People-watching August 16-17
National
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Society
Top ten literal Swedish words
Politics
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Gallery
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Politics
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
National
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
Politics
Swedish politician proposes ban on begging
National
Swede asks for epidural and gets disinfectant
National
Swede reports 'expensive' sex to police
Education
Sweden plans to scrap SFI for adult education
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

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 Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

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

682
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:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se