A zoo keeper bitten by a tiger at Australia Zoo says the attack was not personal.
An Australia Zoo handler has shrugged off a bite from a tiger he’s known for six years, saying the attack was not personal.
In a video published on the Queensland zoo’s YouTube channel, Mark Turner said he held no grudge against Juma, a 130kg male Sumatran tiger, which bit the 42-year-old handler’s left leg on Tuesday while being moved to another area.
“I’d been walking another cat prior to him, and it was a cat he wasn’t very friendly with,” Mr Turner said.
“We always keep them apart, but I had been walking him so the smell of the cat was on me, and he got quite excited by the smell, and that’s why he reacted the way he did.”
He said the incident has not put him off his job or dented his affection for Juma.
“I don’t hold any grudges against Juma, he’s an awesome cat, he’s got a really good personality, he’s a very affectionate cat,” he said.
“I know it wasn’t a personal thing against me, it was just because of the other cat smell that was on me.”
Mr Turner said he was recovering well and described his injury as a “little puncture wound.”
“It will take a little time to heal,” he said.
“As soon as I’m healed up I’ll be straight back in there. I can’t wait to see the cats again.”