The Toronto Zoo said on 18 April it is investigating a video that shows a woman climbing into part of its tiger enclosure to retrieve a hat. The woman's actions caused the animal to lunge at her, but the seven-year-old Sumatran tiger remained behind a second fence and the woman climbed back out of the enclosure unharmed, according to the video, which was widely circulated on YouTube.
A spokeswoman for the zoo, a sprawling forested park that features thousands of animals, said the zoo was unaware of the incident until the video surfaced and is investigating. Toronto Zoo spokeswoman Jennifer Tracey said in a statement that the incident occurred on 16 April. She said it was not unusual for items to fall into animal enclosures, but urged people to contact zoo staff who have equipment to safely retrieve lost items.
Tracey said the tiger, Hari, would not have been traumatised by the incident and was displaying "instinctive behaviour" that did not concern the zoo, Canada's largest. The video, shot by zoo patron Jared Sales, showed a man yelling at the woman and calling her a "moron" for jumping into the enclosure. She appeared to be with at least one child.
"At no point did anyone from security or the zoo come to investigate what was happening. I'm not sure they would have even known someone went into the enclosure if I had not posted this video," Sales said in a statement.