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Escaped snow leopard shot dead at Dudley Zoo
There are thought to be as few as 4,000 snow leopards left in the wild.
Human error led to a snow leopard escaping the enclosure

Dudley Zoo in the West Midlands has confirmed that an eight-year-old snow leopard, named Margaash, was euthanised after failing to return to its enclosure after escaping. The enclosure had been accidentally left open by a zoo keeper.

As soon as Margaash was spotted outside the enclosure, the procedure for escaped animals was activated and the firearms team were called.

Efforts to persuade Margaash to return to the enclosure failed, and public safety was deemed to be at risk due to the approaching darkness and surrounding woodlands. Veterinary advice deemed a tranquilliser dart inadequate due to the amount of time necessary for the drug to take effect.

Derek Grove, director of Dudley Zoo, stated: “Euthanasia is, and always will be, a last resort… Safety of the public is always of paramount importance and our staff are highly experienced and rigorously trained.

"This was an incredibly sad incident and our staff are understandably heartbroken.”

A disciplinary operation has taken place with the staff involved. Zoo security is also being reviewed.

There are thought to be as a few as 4,000 snow leopards left in the wild. Margaash was the father of a snow leopard cub who died aged eleven weeks.

The Snow Leopard Trust commented: “Our thoughts are of course with Margaash; the snow leopard that was tragically killed, but also with the staff and volunteers of Dudley Zoo who must be in shock and grief.

"It's a great loss, and we hope the necessary measures will be taken to avoid any such tragic situation in the future."

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ZSL London Zoo shares animal X-rays

News Story 1
 A selection of X-ray images showing the inner workings of frogs, turtles, snakes and geckos have been shared by veterinary surgeons at ZSL London Zoo.

Taken as part of a routine health check, the images have been shared as part of ‘Vets in Action’ week - a hand’s on role-playing experience for children that explores the life of a zoo vet.

ZSL London Zoo veterinary nurse Heather Mackintosh said: “It’s great to be able to share the work that goes on behind the scenes at the Zoo to keep our residents in tip-top condition – and our visitors are always amazed to find out more about their favourite animals.” 

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News Shorts
Vets in developing nations given free access to BSAVA’s online library

BSAVA has teamed up with the WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to offer vets in developing nations free access to its online library.

The Association’s ‘Foundation Collection’ is comprised of more than 70 hours of articles, lectures and book chapters covering topics such as basic handling skills, working on a budget and emergency triage. Some of the countries set to benefit include Albania, Georgia, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania.

Nicolette Hayward, of BSAVA International Affairs Committee said: “Our mission is to promote excellence in small animal practice through education and science, so we are delighted to work with WSAVA, the WSAVA Foundation and FECAVA to share these high-quality resources to the veterinary profession in low and middle-income countries.”