Moscow zoo polar bear victim of multiple shooting
The Moscow zoo's most popular polar bear has been the victim of a multiple-gunshot attack, the zoo said Saturday.
The 20-year-old Wrangle, whom the zoo acquired as a cub off the Arctic Ocean's Wrangle Island in 1991, came under attack from a small-caliber gun at the end of October, the zoo said in a statement.
The father of two cubs, Wrangle usually stays out of sight in an enclosure but can be seen from a high-rise apartment building opposite the zoo, the statement said.
"We are deeply outraged by the behavior of people who committed this despicable act," the zoo said.
"Perhaps the 'sniper' feels proud about what he did. But where is the heroism in shooting at a defenseless animal from a safe location?"
The bear now faced the threat of infection, the statement added.
The zoo identified Wrangle as "one of the kindest bears at the zoo," which was founded in 1864 and is Russia's oldest.
Polar bears weigh about 500 kilograms (1,100 pounds) as adults and have been classified as a vulnerable species by International Union for Conservation of Nature.
© 2010 AFP