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Ole Braatelien, The Western Journal

NextImg:Zoo Abruptly Closes After Gruesome Discovery of Shoe in Tiger's Mouth

A Pakistani zoo closed after its employees made a shocking discovery: a shoe in a resident tiger’s mouth.

The staff of Sherbagh Zoo, which is in the city Bahawalpur in the Punjab province, made the discovery the morning of Dec. 6, according to Samaa TV.

Upon further investigation, they found the shoe’s lifeless owner in the den.

Four tigers had evidently mauled the man to death, according to Samaa TV.

When staff discovered the body, a forensic team investigated shortly after, but the identity of the man remained unknown, though the zoo staff was all accounted for.

“Our assessment so far is that this appears to be a lunatic, because a sensible person would not jump into the den,” said  Zaheer Anwar, Bahawalpur Deputy Commissioner, CBS News reported.

“You can see the den is secured. There are stairs behind the den, maybe he jumped from there.”

Ali Usman Bukhari, the deputy director of the wildlife department, said security did not hear any noise from the tiger habitat the night before, nor the morning of the incident, according to The Nation, an English-speaking Pakistani newspaper.

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“The autopsy report has not been released, however evidence gathered from the enclosure points towards him being alive when he was attacked by the tigers,” Bukhari said, according to CBS News.

“If we find a security lapse, we will address it. If need be, we will hire private security guards.”

Zafarullah, a Bahawalpur rescue service official who goes by one name, said the victim’s legs were badly mauled, CBS News reported.

“It is yet not known who he is and how he got there. It is being investigated. The body looked several hours old,” Zafarullah said.

Below is a clip of a tiger at the San Antonio Zoo in Texas.

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Bahawalpur Zoo was built in 1942 before it was eventually named “Sher Bagh,” which means “lion garden,” according to the website.

It is Pakistan’s fourth-largest zoo.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.