Bronx Zoo Jumper's Reasoning: Being "One With The Tiger"



The story yesterday about the man who leaped off the Bronx Zoo monorail into a pit occupied by a Siberian tiger named Bashuta has transfixed New York media outlets due to its sheer absurdity. David Villalobos, the jumper himself, was brought to a nearby hospital and treated for all types of punctures and broken bones. Originally, cops believed that the man had jumped "on purpose" but, as we had briefly mentioned, maybe the motive had something to do with the act itself - in other words, Villalobos jumped for the thrill of it, not for the remorse.

Turns out we may have been right.

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Guy Jumps Into a Bronx Zoo Tiger Pit And Lives To Tell the Tale

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This isn't Bashuta but this is what Bashuta looks like.
We all love the Bronx Zoo. Who doesn't? The mini-jungle of Morris County provides fun for all age groups and houses a few animals that you wouldn't ever think of seeing in the Big City. One of which is a tiger (actually, that's not always true) and, sometimes, people get a little too excited about going to the Zoo.

To get from point A to point B fast, a visitor can take the monorail over the Bronx River. The train car that you ride in has no sides and passes by the most ferocious animals the Amazonian theme park has to offer. And this didn't stop a 25-year-old man from leaping off the train car and over a 16-foot-high fence, landing in a pit occupied by Bashuta - an 11-year-old male Siberian tiger.

After about ten minutes of straight pain for the jumper, zoo officials showed up with a fire extinguisher and managed to get the tiger to leave. However, in that time, the guy had punctures all of his body, a broken arm and a broken leg.

Because that's what happens when you jump into a tiger pit.

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Coyotes Have Invaded New York: How To Survive

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Have you heard? There are coyotes in New York! Coyotes! They have been seen in our fair city's green spaces, such as Central Park, prowling -- all coyote-like -- around Harlem and near Columbia University with their hungry, coyote eyes and bared, coyote fangs.

Now, scientists say that these carnivorous canines are pretty much harmless, and could actually be a good thing for NYC ecology, with one scientist telling the New York Times: "What happens is that when there's a top predator, it will help control other levels of the food chain."

But don't be lulled into a sense of false security: while old myths about coyote bites turning humans into werecoyotes probably aren't true, you should generally avoid petting packs of wild animals. However, if you live here, it's very likely that you have forgotten basic outdoorsy common sense. Runnin' Scared has put together brief survival guide to overcoming New York's wild beasts.

(Disclaimer: These tips might or might not actually work.)

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Assemblymember Amy Paulin On The Shelter Access Bill

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Amy Paulin
In response to longtime concerns over how shelters and rescues treat animals, Assemblymember Amy Paulin (D-Westchester) has sponsored the Shelter Access Bill.

The proposed legislation has been in the works for several years. After intense debate -- including outcry from some "no-kill" animal rights and welfare groups -- a revamped version recently got the OK from the Assembly's agriculture committee, and will soon go before the codes committee. If it succeeds there, the bill will go before the entire Assembly.

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Save the Pigeons? Flock To Be Evicted from George Washington Bridge Bus Station

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City living is no lark for pigeons.

The second-most hated urban animal will soon be booted from the George Washington Bridge Bus Terminal.

The Daily News notes that pigeons have called the rundown station home for some time, but will be kicked out when the terminal undergoes $183 million in renovations this summer.

But what about the birds, you might ask?

The News notes that the flock of pigeons (presumably of a feather) has "taken up residence inside the depot and was spotted" -- get this -- "frolicking, foraging, flying -- and leaving unsanitary droppings."

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Shepard Fairey's Deitch Mural May Be Guerilla Art, After All

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by Adam Nadel for New York
Animal New York is reporting that "a very official looking work stop order and notice of violation" was posted on the space at Houston and Bowery in lower Manhattan. The new wall -- once the site of a Keith Haring mural -- is now, essentially, a giant and supposedly legal billboard for Fairey's show "May Day" at Deitch Projects.

But according to the city, it was done without permit, meaning someone better get to some paperwork and quick, or the whole thing must be torn down. Notice after the jump.

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