KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Zoo Knoxville announced that Wiley, a 5-year-old Hartmann’s mountain zebra, died due to injuries sustained after colliding with a fence Wednesday morning.
According to a press release, Zoo staff and the veterinary team from the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine (UTCVM) were getting ready to perform a physical exam on Wiley in the corral of the Grasslands Africa habitat when she made a sudden movement and collided head-on with a chain-link fence and collapsed.
The veterinary team began performing CPR but was unable to resuscitate her. The cause of death is suspected to be a broken neck and a necropsy will be performed at the UTCVM, officials said.
Zoo Knoxville said that Wiley was one of four mountain zebras in the zoo’s herd and the aunt of the 3-month-old foal born in December.
Wiley arrived at the zoo in April 2018 along with female Lydia and male Die Toekoms.
“We are heartbroken about this tragic accident,” said Phil Colclough, Director of Animal Care, Conservation, and Education. “Despite careful planning to minimize stress for Wiley, this happened in a split-second before we could administer anesthesia. Our team is devastated and currently helping the herd adjust to the loss. We appreciate kind thoughts on a very difficult day for us.”