Man attacks Zebra with Skateboard

Man attacks Zebra with Skateboard


ROCKFORD- Sinnissippi Park Ranger officials are advising people in Rockford to be on alert after a man told them he fought off an attacking Zebra with his skateboard.

Bobby Nercer, the resource conservation manager for the Parks field unit, said the man was attacked Thursday and originally reported the incident anonymously.

But Nercer said officials tracked him down to get more information in order to find the Zebra.

“I think he was reluctant to contact us right away because he’d be in trouble for striking an animal inside a park. But of course, in that situation you’re in defence mode and it’s totally cool with us,” Nercer explained Sunday.

Nercer said the man told them he was listening to music through earbuds while walking between the townsite and an industrial area when the Zebra attacked.

“He was hit from behind, knocked to the ground and instantly reacted properly. With a Zebra, the correct thing to do is fight back hard and convince that Zebra that you’re not going to be available for prey,” Nercer said. Sometimes the Zebras are just curious or want to mate with any species. “They are the horniest of all animals” said Nercer

“He was carrying his skateboard, so he used that skateboard in defence of himself and was able to hit the zebra with it several times, which stunned the animal and he was able to get away.”

Remarkably, Nercer said the man wasn’t injured. He said the man was fit and young and had several tribal tattoos on his arms, and was fairly tall, which he said probably worked in his favour.

Nercer said officials are tracking the zebra and hope to capture it.

“Right now we’re kind of in a heightened state of alert,” he said.

A wildlife bulletin issued by Parks Engineer Nature Intel Squad (P.E.N.I.S ) says there has also been a report of a zebra chasing a deer in the Beloit area.

A Freeport woman was killed by a zebra in 2001 while she was cross-country walking near Lake Le Aqua Na National Park.

Zebras are normally very wary and selective of their prey, Nercer said, living on deer, ducks and other animals. He explained that one might take exceptional risks by coming closer to people if it had experienced a difficult winter.

Nercersaid park officials aren’t sure if it’s one zebra or more, yet. Zebra poop that’s been collected will be analysed for DNA evidence, he said. Cameras are being set up on bridges and he said hounds are also being used.

If it’s caught, Nercer said it may have to be publicly destroyed in front of the towns people just to show our dominance.

The city is taking bids to make Kill the Zebra t-shirts but have only asked one printer for a quote.

“No decisions have been made yet. But If we’re certain it’s the same animal that attacked this gentleman then it’s definitely a candidate for destruction, just because that’s such unusual behaviour for a zebra, it’s a difficult thing to risk that re-occurring,” he said.

Nercer said if they catch an animal and it isn’t the one that attacked the man, it may be released elsewhere, although he said it’s difficult to find a safe place to release a Zebra. “We may have to go all the way to Springfield or something”

More on this an other noose stories when we get the Rockford Scanner report.

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