Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Pengiun Attacks on the Rise in Nation's Zoos, Harbors

A recent government report indicates that penguin attacks in the U.S. are increasing at a rapid pace. The report comes on the heels of a fatal attack at the Peoria Zoo in Peoria, IL.

A handler who was spraying the birds down with a chemical used to keep the penguins calm and docile, slipped and fell. He was unable to get up due to a sprained ankle, and an angry penguin battered the man to death with it flightless wings, whipping them back and forth in a brutal attack. Bystanders said the loud slapping sounds were disturbingly gruesome.

"All I saw was a blur of penguin wings, and blood spurting out of that poor man's head," sobbed Regina Wilkinson of Chicago. "You could smell salt water and blood in the air!"

Ron Pilfergert of Springfield, IL said, "The dull, rapid slaps of penguin wings against human flesh is a sound I don't ever want to hear again." His eyes then glazed over as he whispered, "The horror....THE HORROR!"

In the wake of the incident, Monterey Bay Aquarium handler/intern Joseph Birmbaum gave a chilling description of his penguin experiences.

"Oh they look cute and cuddly. But I can feel their eyes watching me as I enter the room..watching...always watching. God forbid you get what we call the Death Stare...then you know its about to attack and you need to get the hell out of there! They just lock on to you...then they slowly begin to waddle in your direction..finally they dart like a bullet at full force, sliding on their bellies, usually impaling you though the shin or big toe. Then when you're down, the real horror begins. They just stand there perfectly still, their fishy breath against your face. At that point the only thing you can do is pray for a quick death."

Some facilities are stepping up safety measures to ensure their workers' well-being while tending to the vicious birds.

"We've installed a large crane at the top of the penguins' pen to rescue victims. It was expensive, but it saves lives."

Ironically, three construction workers died during the construction of the crane.

"We haven't found the bodies yet.They fell into the penguin pit and just disappeared into a sea of black and white frenzy. No clothes..nothing."

"Horrible little devils they are!" said "Pegleg Paul, who works on the nearby docks. "They be known to bring down a ship and sink a crew in a matter of minutes! I thank the Lord above they can't fly. Then we'd REALLY be up shit creek."

"I've come up against sharks 50 feet in length..whales that almost swallowed me ship...but penguins...PENGUINS BE MY MORTAL ENEMY!! LOOK AT ME LEG!! JUST LOOK AT IT!!"

All handlers at the Peoria Zoo are now equipped with cattle prods and mace. There is even talk of chainmail. As an extra precaution, the vicious penguin "herd" is lured into a small room using a mannequin where they are gassed to sleep before feedings.

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