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Two brown bears were shot by zookeepers in England after the animals escaped their enclosure, PEOPLE reported. The bears were kept at the Zoological Society of London’s Whipsnade Zoo in Bedfordshire, England.

The bears, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty, escaped their pen when a tree fell and create a bridge into the wild boar enclosure next to theirs. CNN reported that the zoo decided to euthanize the bears after they attacked a boar.

The decision was made because there was an “an immediate threat to human life,” said the zoo’s chief curator, Malcolm Fitzpatrick, in an email to staff, “As brown bears are strong and dangerous predators, our first priority is safety — we must quickly make decisions informed by our experience and expertise to protect our people, guests and our other animals.”

Zookeepers were on the scene shortly after the bears escaped and couldn’t tranquilize the bears because they would remain unpredictable and aggressive. “As zookeepers and animal carers, this situation is something we train to deal with through regular, rigorous drills — but one that we always hope we’ll never have to face,” said Fitzpatrick.

Zoos are harmful to wildlife and do not help with conservation efforts, as they most commonly publicize. Animals are kept in small habitats and often suffer emotional distress. Sign this petition to call for a ban on zoos around the world!

Read more about why zoos are harmful to society in One Green Planet:

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