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Zebra bites zookeeper; gazelle death may be related | Pets

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Zebra bites zookeeper; gazelle death may be related

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- A National Zoo spokesperson says that a keeper was bitten by a zebra early Monday morning, which likely led to the death of a gazelle.

The keeper was bitten multiple times by a 10-year-old male Grevy's zebra named Gumu, officials said.

The keeper was sent to the hospital because he was bleeding. Officials say he was talking and conscious. 

The zebra was unharmed and is in an off-exhibit holding area at the Cheetah Conservation Station.

National Zoo officials say a one-year-old male Dama gazelle named Tony also died Monday morning, likely a result of being spooked by the zebra incident.

"Initial necropsy reports showed evidence of fractured vertebrae which tells us he was likely spooked by the incident and ran into a barrier," officials said in a news release.

Zoo officials are investigating the incident and hope to have more information soon.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species lists the Grevy's zebra as endangered. The IUCN lists the Dama gazelle as critically endangered.