Stacey Konwiser, a 38-year-old female zookeeper employee of Palm Beach Zoo was on Friday mauled to death by one of the Malayan Tigers she trained.
According to the Palm Beach Post, Stacey had been working in the Zoo for over 3years and she was took care of 4 Malayan tigers. She was performing a habitual procedure in the night house where the tigers sleep at about 1:45pm in preparation for her show which was programmed at 2pm in the Zoo when the 13-year-old tiger attacked and mauled her.
As soon as that happened, Animal Control was contacted about the attack but Animal Control contacted the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission who responded to the call.
Zoo officials issued a code red alert after the attack and the male Malayan tiger received tranquilizers. Visitors were all moved to a safe place and all the 250 animals in the Zoo were accounted for.
A top zoo official told the newspaper that Stacey was taken to St Mary’s Medical Center where she later died after suffering a ‘severe bite’ wound.
Jeremy, the husband of late Stacey is also a keeper at Palm Beach Zoo and they have been married for10 years.
Spokeswoman Naki Carter told Sun Sentinel that all guests were evacuated and safe, the zoo was shut down. Officials say the zoo will be closed for the next two days.
‘The tiger never escaped,’.’We have safety protocols for when incidents like this occur. We initiated those safety protocols.’
West Palm Beach Police said the tiger was tranquilized. Authorities had to wait until the drugs took effect on the tiger before rescue crews could get in to help the victim, Naki Carter added.