9 Apr 2013

Zoo says enclosure door left open by mistake

7:42 pm on 9 April 2013

A close encounter in which a tiger took a swipe at a keeper at Hamilton Zoo has been blamed on human error.

Zoo director Stephen Standley says the tiger named Sali got into an enclosure with the keeper because a door was mistakenly left open on 16 March.

The keeper was about to begin a talk to the public and had placed meat in the public display area when the big cat ran up and playfully swatted at her boots.

Mr Standley says the keeper didn't panic and wasn't injured. He says visitors' safety was not compromised at any time.

Dr Standley says increased security measures will be put in place and keepers will be reminded to lock doors once they have completed working in an animal area.