The Qinling Wildlife Zoo in Xi’an province was reported after patrons discovered that the horns on one of its deers had been sawed off. The zoo responded that it was done to prevent the deer from hurting other animals, leading reporters to visit the site and inspect the full process of antler sawing, Tencent News reports.
Before sawing off its horns, the zoo vet anesthetized the stag. Shen Guancheng, the chief engineer and vet of the zoo, explained to reporters that what they had sawed was not technically pilose antlers, used for medicinal purposes in China, but horns which hadn’t ossified completely. These type of horns have no medicinal value and are normally kept as specimen, Shen said.
“Stags grow long horns which begin to ossify around August every year. Cervidae animals are rather wild but after the fall, they become extremely aggressive in their head period,” Shen said, “Stags often crash other stags to fight for their mate. So it will be very dangerous when they have sharp and hard horns.”
According to Shen, there are 46 kinds of plant-eating animals in the zoo at risk to be hurt by the stag. The zoo said that it saws off its animals horns every year.
“In order to protect all types of animals and to maintain harmony among them, vet staff have had the horns sawed off recently,” Shen admitted.
A white-lipped deer’s horns were sawed off.
Zoo staff members prepare medicine before the horn sawing.
“We strictly follow the regulated procedure of horn sawing involving anesthesia…to eliminate their pain. Their wounds might bleed when they run, but the horn sawing won’t hamper their growth, and the wounds will recover within a very short time.” Shen added.
Vets are anaethetizing the sambur.
Wu Xiaoping, head of the zoo, confirmed that the horn sawing techniques are within regulation and that it won’t effect the deer’s well-being.
Vets are helping a white-lipped deer stop bleeding.
Recently on Shanghaiist: Photos of emaciated tiger at Tianjin zoo spark concern among netizens
By Lucy Liu
[Images via Tencent New ]