Aspiration Cause Of Death For LR Zoo's Giraffe

Feb 13, 2014

Preliminary necropsy results show that a giraffe that died at the Little Rock Zoo last year aspirated to death after it was attacked by another giraffe.

Zoo officials say 13-year-old Jigsaw died from aspiration pneumonia - or an inflammation of the lungs caused by inhaling and then choking on fluids or food.

Jigsaw died Dec. 29 after getting into a fight with another giraffe, an 8-year-old named Mesi. The zoo says Mesi broke through a large metal dividing gate and sparred with Jigsaw until the older giraffe fell.

Zoo spokeswoman Susan Altrui tells the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that Jigsaw's death was a direct result of the altercation with Mesi. Altrui says Jigsaw fell to the ground and could not get up, causing the aspiration.