On Monday, a bear at the Minnesota Zoo picked up a big rock and slammed it over and over against the glass that separated the bears from zoo visitors, shattering it. The five-layer safety glass did not fall apart, however, and no one was hurt. The bear exhibit has been closed since then, and the zoo will have to shell out “tens of thousands of dollars” to replace the pane.
Robin Ficker, a visitor from Maryland, said he was watching “the bears wrestling with each other and looking at the people” shortly after the zoo opened at 9 a.m. Then one of the animals “picked up from the bottom of the pool a rock that had to weigh 50 pounds. And while many people were standing there, he slammed it against the glass several times,” Ficker said.
[Zoo animal collections manager Tony] Fisher said he’s not sure which of the three bears is responsible for breaking one of pane’s five layers, but he suspects it was Kenai, a nearly full-grown male. Grizzlies typically top out at 800 to 900 pounds.
Kenai is “usually the clown out there, fooling around in the water,” Fisher said. “He didn’t know what he was doing. He was just being a bear.”
Oh, really? Do grizzly bears in the wild ever throw rocks? This could be the beginning of a revolt, as bears learn to use tools to gain their freedom. And the last thing we need are free grizzly bears teaching each other how to use big rocks to get what they want. Read more on this story at the Minneapolis Star Tribune. -via Digg
(Image credit: Robin Ficker)