Famed animal zookeeper, television host and director emeritus of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium defended the decision to put down the 450 pound gorilla named Harambe to protect the life of the 4-year-old boy who fell into the enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo.
“I’ve seen him take a green coconut, which you can’t bust open with a sledgehammer and squish it like this,” Hanna told “Good Morning America” about Harambe, gesturing with his hand the ease with which gorillas can crush fruit. “You’re dealing with either human life or animal life here. So what is the decision? I think it’s very simple to figure that out.”
“I can tell you now, that there’s no doubt in my mind the child would not be here today if they hadn’t made the decision,” Hanna said.
Hanna also defended his position on CBS This Morning and was even more adamant that a horrific tragedy was avoided.
“You hear the screaming noise and watch that gorilla’s response. He doesn’t know what’s going on — he’s a silverback and not a female. You can see by his face that he’s alarmed. He goes over and looks at the little child, there’s no doubt about that, but what happens when you tranquilize the animal?”