Saturday, 20. December 2014
28. 05. 14. - 15:00
These shocking images show the moment a polar bear ate a live peacock just days after it was released into its new enclosure at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo.
As zoo visitors watched in shocked fascination Lynn, the female polar bear, caught the white peacock and bit into the neck of the struggling bird before ripping it to pieces.
One eye witness told local media: "The peacock had been strutting around but when the bear came running over the peacock realised it was danger and tried to fly away, but didn't clear the wall. It dropped back into the water, where the bear was waiting for it."
Delighted with the treat, she ran round the cage with it to stop her mate getting a chance to share the catch, and she then consumed the bird, leaving a trail of bloody white feathers in her wake.
One visitor videotaped the scene, and the footage shows two-year-old Lynn running off with the peacock remains to make sure she eats it alone without being disturbed by her partner Ranzo.
He is seen pursuing her hoping to get a bite of the dead bird. Now there are fears for the zoos remaining three peacocks who have been seen flying into the polar bear enclosure apparently looking for their missing pal.
Another zoo visitor said: "The other white peacock stands on the wall of the polar bear enclosure calling all the time for its missing pal, it is really sad."
The birds made themselves at home there during the past year when it was being renovated and before it had any predators inside. Now the fear is that the others may fly into their deaths, including the only remaining white peacock.
The white peacock is a normal peacock but suffers from Leucism. This is a general term resulting from defects in pigment cells that turn them into feathered albinos.
The polar bears were brought to Vienna only two weeks ago after spending the last two years in the Netherlands and Finland while the renovations on their enclosure were carried out.
In the meantime, the peacocks had been allowed to fly into their empty cage, a luxury that was later to cost the life of at least one of them after he failed to notice the cage's new arrivals.
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