Thursday, October 30, 2008

Liger Mauls Man at Pseudo Sanctuary

Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary is not a sanctuary, but rather, a part of the problem.  Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary at 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County, OK is home to 27 big cats. Former keepers have warned for years that the practices there would lead to injuries, escapes and death. SIAS' website is covered in the typically ignorant photos of the President, Lori Ensign bottle feeding tigers and walking them on leashes. That kind of irresponsible behavior can only lead to tragedy for humans as well as the animals when they pay the ultimate price.  See  SanctuaryStandards.com to see that this is no sanctuary.

Mauling puzzles BA wildlife refuge owner


By TIM STANLEY World Staff Writer
10/30/2008  10:25 AM

BROKEN ARROW — Officials with a Broken Arrow wildlife refuge are at a loss to understand why an experienced animal handler who was mauled Wednesday by a big cat violated rules by opening a cage during feeding time.

Peter Getz, 32, a volunteer at Safari's Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E. 58th St., was attacked shortly before noon Wednesday while attempting to feed a liger.

Getz, who suffered wounds to his neck, remained hospitalized Thursday morning at Saint John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition.

Lori Ensign, sanctuary owner and operator, said she's trying to piece together what happened, but she knows the sanctuary's strict policy against opening the animal pens during feedings was not followed.

"We try to have all the procedures in place, but for some reason, they weren't followed this time. In all my years we've stressed that whatever you do you don't open that gate," said Ensign, who was away buying feed when the attack occurred.

Ensign said Getz, who is experienced and loves working with animals, has volunteered at the sanctuary for about a year and a half and worked previously at the Tulsa Zoo.

"This is just horrid," Ensign said. "Peter is like a brother. He loves doing this, loves the carnivores — the bears, big cats

and snakes. We were thinking about turning the place over to him some day."

She said she and others are working to set up a fund to help with Getz's medical expenses, with more information to follow.

Other volunteers were with Getz during the feeding, per sanctuary rules.

"We always have three people for feedings as back-up," Ensign said. "They were there and were able to help get him out. But they are still in shock right now and we don't want to push them to find out why procedures were broken. We want to give them time."

The liger, named Rocky, is a hybrid cross between a male lion and a female tiger.

Rocky's fate will ultimately be determined by state wildlife officials, who will investigate the incident and decide whether the cat will be euthanized, Ensign said.

Ensign said the facility has a good safety record.

In 2000, two handlers at the sanctuary were bitten by a black bear, according to reports. The bear was later euthanized.

The sanctuary, a nonprofit wildlife refuge, houses about 200 animals, most of which were donated by private owners, according to the facility's Web site. All staff members are volunteers.

The facility is licensed and regulated through the Oklahoma Wildlife Department and United States Department of Agriculture and is subject to the same rules as public zoos.


Handler attacked while feeding large cat

BROKEN ARROW - Peter Getz, 32, an employee of Safari's Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow, remains in critical condition at a Tulsa hospital after being mauled by a liger, a hybrid of a lion and a tigress.

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Authorities say Getz was feeding the big cat Wednesday when he was attacked and bitten on the neck.

After escaping the cage, Getz collapsed. Paramedics performed CPR on him and he was flown by helicopter to St. John Medical Center for treatment.

The refuge was immediately evacuated and locked down.

A group of students from Haskell was inside the sanctuary at the time of the attack but apparently did not see or hear anything that was going on.

A Ledger call to Safari's owner Lori Ensign was answered automatically: "Due to the emotional strain from this injury, Safari's will be closed until further notice. We will only be able to answer emergency calls at this time, so please keep us in your prayers."

http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=20182445&BRD=2754&PAG=461&dept_id=574063&rfi=6

Liger Critically Injures Oklahoma Zoo Worker

Broken Arrow, OK (AHN) - A worker at an Oklahoma zoo was seriously injured after a liger, a cross between a lion and a tiger, attacked him Wednesday while feeding the animal.

Peter Getz of Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow was taken to the St. John Medical Center in Tulsa and remains in critical condition for injuries in the neck and chest, according to authorities.

Zoo officials have no comment but a recorded message from its telephone answering machine said a worker was injured and the safari is closed until further notice.

http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7012846430

Worker attacked by tiger at animal sanctuary

By
Don Bishop
@ October 30, 2008 3:29 AM

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. (AP) - Authorities say a handler at a Wagoner County wild animal sanctuary suffered a puncture wound to the neck after a big cat attacked him during a feeding.

Thirty-two-year-old Peter Getz was bitten in the upper torso and the neck area at Safari's Animal Sanctuary yesterday around noon. Getz was flown by medical helicopter to Saint John Medical Center, where he is listed in critical condition.

Sheriff's Deputy James Suddath says Getz was able to escape the cage following the attack, then collapsed.

Initial reports said Getz was attacked by a tiger. KRMG reported that a lion-tiger mix (a "liger") named Rocky attacked the handler.

Officials say a Haskell Public Schools class on a field trip at the sanctuary didn't witness the attack and that the facility was evacuated and locked down after the incident.


Handler is mauled by big cat
Rocky the liger is shown at Safari's Animal Sanctuary in Broken Arrow. Tulsa World file
 


By TIM STANLEY World Staff Writer
10/30/2008
Last Modified: 10/30/2008  2:38 AM


The handler suffers a neck wound and is hospitalized in critical condition.



BROKEN ARROW — An animal handler at a wildlife refuge was mauled by a big cat during a feeding Wednesday.

The attack occurred shortly before noon at Safari's Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E. 58th St., emergency responders said.

The handler, identified as Peter Getz, 32, was attacked by a liger, a hybrid of a lion and a tigress.

Getz, who suffered a puncture wound to his neck, was flown by helicopter to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa, Fire Department officials said.

He was listed in critical condition Wednesday afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Deputy Fire Chief James Suddath said: "He was bitten on the neck during a feeding, but he was able to escape the cage. He collapsed after he got out."

Paramedics performed CPR on Getz, Suddath said.

Wagoner County sheriff's deputies also responded.

A deputy said a Haskell Public Schools class was on a field trip at the sanctuary but did not witness the attack.

The refuge was immediately evacuated and locked down, with the liger, named Rocky, and other animals remaining in their pens, officials said.

Sanctuary officials could not be reached Wednesday for comment.

The sanctuary, a nonprofit wildlife refuge, houses about 200 animals, most of which were donated by private owners, according to its Web site.

All of its staff members are volunteers.

The refuge is licensed and regulated through the Oklahoma Wildlife Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is subject to the same rules as public zoos.

Officials said regulatory officials had been notified about the incident.

In 2000, two handlers at the sanctuary were bitten by a black bear.

http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=20081030_12_A5_Rockyt778685

Liger Attacks Handler At Safari's

Broken Arrow - A handler at Safari's wildlife sanctuary in Broken Arrow is in critical condition after being attacked by a liger.

Owner Lori Ensign says they aren't sure why the cat attacked handler Peter Getz. The liger which is half tiger and half lion has been at the park for over 10 years.

Ensign says Gets was feeding the liger when he opened the cage door, something ensign says they never do for safety. Getz is in ICU at St. John Medical Center.

Ensign says they plan to set up a fund for Getz at Arvest Bank to help with medical expenses.

http://www.ktul.com/news/stories/1008/565586.html

Volunteer critically injured by large cat at Broken Arrow sanctuary

A large cat mauled a volunteer at the Safari's Sanctuary in Broken Arrow Wednesday morning.

The attack occurred at approximately 11:45 at the sanctuary, located at 26881 East 58th Street in the Wagoner County portion of Broken Arrow.

Lori Ensign, operator of the sanctuary, told 2NEWS HD that the incident involved one of the sanctuary's most well-known and popular animals, "Rocky."

"Rocky" is a cross between a lion and a tiger, a hybrid referred to as a "liger."

Ensign said that the accident occurred during a feeding.

A LifeFlight helicopter transported the volunteer, a 32-year-old man, to St. John Medical Center.

This story will be updated as new information becomes available.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apRpFg2F2NM  Video of Rocky the liger being fed by guests
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIG2iAYtoxQ Video of Rocky the liger being fed by guests w/ owner's narration

Liger injures worker at animal sanctuary in Broken Arrow

BY MICHAEL KIMBALL
Published: October 29, 2008

BROKEN ARROW — A liger at a Wagoner County animal sanctuary attacked a volunteer late this morning, officials said.


Rocky the liger, shown in this undated file photo, attacked a volunteer at a Wagoner County wildlife sanctuary Wednesday, officials said. Photo provided by The Tulsa World
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Peter Getz, whose hometown and age were not immediately available, was airlifted to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition, a Broken Arrow Fire Department spokesman said.

A hospital spokeswoman said Getz was admitted to the emergency room, but an updated status was not available this afternoon.

The attack occurred just before noon at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County sheriff's deputy Eugene Smith said.

Getz was trying to feed the liger when it attacked him, leaving wounds on his chest and neck, Smith said.

A liger is a cross between a lion and a tiger. According to the sanctuary's Web site, the liger is named Rocky.

Calls to the animal sanctuary went to voicemail without ringing. The voicemail message says "a volunteer had an injury. Due to the emotional strain of the situation, Safari's will be closed until further notice."

http://newsok.com/liger-injures-worker-at-animal-sanctuary-in-broken-arrow/article/3316910


Worker attacked by tiger at animal sanctuary


Associated Press - October 29, 2008 9:05 PM ET

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. (AP) - Authorities say a handler at a Wagoner County wild animal sanctuary suffered a puncture wound to the neck after a big cat attacked him during a feeding today.

Thirty-2-year-old Peter Getz was bitten in the upper torso and the neck area at Safari's Animal Sanctuary and flown by medical helicopter to St. John Medical Center, where he is listed in critical condition.

Sheriff's Deputy James Suddath says Getz was able to escape the cage following the attack, then collapsed.

Initial reports said Getz was attacked by a tiger. The Tulsa World reported that a lion-tiger mix named Rocky attacked the handler.

Officials say a Haskell Public Schools class on a field trip at the sanctuary didn't witness the attack and that the facility was evacuated and locked down after the incident.

Information from: The Tulsa World, http://www.tulsaworld.com and KOTV-TV, http://www.newson6.com

http://www.kten.com/Global/story.asp?S=9260770&nav=menu410_3


Big cat injures Wagoner sanctuary volunteer

BY MICHAEL KIMBALL
Published: October 30, 2008

BROKEN ARROW — A 1,000-pound cat attacked a volunteer Wednesday at a Wagoner County animal sanctuary, officials said. The cat was identified as a liger, which is a cross between a male lion and a female tiger.

 

Peter Getz, 32, of Stillwater was airlifted to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa in critical condition with wounds to his chest and neck, a Broken Arrow Fire Department spokesman said. A hospital spokeswoman would not release his condition.

The attack occurred just before noon at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary, 26881 E 58, east of Broken Arrow, Wagoner County sheriff's Deputy Eugene Smith said. Getz was trying to feed the liger when it attacked.

Calls to the animal sanctuary went to voicemail Wednesday. The message says "a volunteer had an injury. Due to the emotional strain of the situation, Safari's will be closed until further notice." The sanctuary did not return a call seeking comment.

The liger, named Rocky, weighed an estimated 1,000 pounds, according to an undated video from Tulsa television station KOTV-6 posted on the sanctuary's Web site.

In 2003, a bear cub attacked a handler's arms and legs at Safari's Interactive Animal Sanctuary.

http://newsok.com/big-cat-injures-sanctuary-volunteer/article/3317094


--
For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457

http://www.BigCatRescue.org MakeADifference@BigCatRescue.org

Sign our petition to protect tigers from being farmed here:

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