Rangers Kill Taunted Tusker

Elephant executed when teasing partygoers provoke him into trashing cars
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 8, 2008 3:25 AM CST
In this October 2007 photo supplied by the Independent Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, Tusker, the towering 50 year old bull is seen at a lodge in Kariba. Tusker was shot Sunday Jan. 6 2008 at Charara...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Tusker, a 50-year-old bull elephant, was an old  favorite at a safari park in Zimbabwe, but rangers shot him dead after he trampled several cars at a rowdy New Year's Eve party where the animal was taunted. Witnesses say that drunken partygoers teased Tusker by flashing car lights, lighting fireworks, throwing bottles and even slapping his rump, AP reports.

Rangers said the towering elephant had become a danger but others disagreed. "Despite this senseless abuse, we have had no reports of Tusker hurting anyone, which is testament to his basic good nature," said a conservationist. "It is shocking these parties where drugs and alcohol are abused are permitted in wildlife areas."