Rare footage captures lions and rhinos in intimidating stand-off
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Warning: The article contains graphic imagery

Horrific footage has emerged online showing a zookeeper getting his finger ripped off by a lion.

The clip appears to depict the animal being taunted by a member of staff at Jamaica Zoo in St Elizabeth, putting his hand into the enclosure through a metal fence.

Then, as the man is trying to withdraw his hand, the lion latches onto his finger.

The keeper lets out a scream of pain in the clip, before pulling the full force of his weight to try and remove his hand from the animal’s jaws.

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The video, which was uploaded by TheJamaica Observer, has been viewed tens of thousands of times since it was posted over the weekend.

Viewers were quick to share their thoughts on the clip in the comments section, and many questioned why the zookeeper was putting his hands into the enclosure in the first place.

Visitors stunned after zoo attendant’s finger bitten off by lion at Jamaica Zoowww.youtube.com

“Locking animals up simply for people to view and enjoy is bad enough. Taunting the animal for no reason is beyond cruel. The lion is the true victim here,” one said.

Another added: “Don’t have much sympathy. Why in gods earths name would you stick your finger in a lions cage like that?!?! [sic]”

One more wrote: “Idk what bothers me more. The fact he kept playing with the lion by sticking his fingers near its mouth or the fact that there were two people who stood perfectly still while having their phones out to record the whole thing.”

A witness told The Jamaica Observer: “When it happened, I thought it was a joke. I didn’t realise the seriousness of it because it’s their job to put on a show.

“Obviously, when he fell on the ground everybody realised that it was serious. Everybody started to panic. The entire skin and about the first joint of his finger was gone.

“I ran away from the whole thing, because me nuh like see blood and it was too graphic for me. His facial expression when he was walking is like the pain never kicked in.”

The zoo’s management team later released a statement which read: “The actions displayed in a video by a contractor to Jamaica Zoo, is tragic and do not represent the safety procedures and policies that must be adhered to at all times at Jamaica Zoo.

“We are currently reviewing the video, with a view of preventing any future recurrences. It is an unfortunate event that should never have happened, and we the family of Jamaica Zoo are doing everything to assist the gentleman in moving forward.

“We do hope you continue to support Jamaica Zoo. We have always been and will continue to be a safe place for you and your family to visit.”

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