Lost Several Fingers and Dragged by Chimps
An American graduate student is in hospital in South Africa after being badly mauled by two large male chimpanzees who attacked him as he stood close to their enclosure in a sanctuary for abused chimps, the sanctuary director said on Friday.
The victim lost several fingers and was dragged down by the chimpanzees in the attack on Thursday at the Jane Goodall Institute Chimpanzee Eden near the northeastern town Nelspruit.
The University of Texas at San Antonio graduate student was in critical condition after two chimpanzees mauled him at a sanctuary for the animals in northeastern South Africa., a joint venture with the ape conservation institute founded by renowned U.S. primatologist Jane Goodall, is a sanctuary for ill-treated chimpanzees rescued from the illegal pet and bushmeat trades and from the entertainment industry.
Sanctuary director David Oosthuizen said the injured student, whom he did not name, was from the University of Texas, San Antonio (UTSA), and was studying for a masters degree in Anthropology and Primatology. In a separate written statement, Oosthuizen said chimpanzees were wild animals and could be defensive of their territories.
"Any interaction between humans and wild animals can be dangerous as wild animals are often very strong and can act aggressively if approached or if they feel threatened."