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Marius was a perfectly healthy young giraffe who was shot dead and autopsied in the presence of visitors to the gardens at a Copenhagen zoo on Feb. 9, 2014, despite an online petition to save it signed by thousands of animal lovers. / KELD NAVNTOFT, AFP/Getty Images

Another healthy giraffe named Marius in another Danish zoo may be euthanized to prevent inbreeding.

Like the Copenhagen zoo that caused a global uproar for killing its 18-month-old male Marius on Sunday, the Jyllands Park Zoo is trying to acquire a female giraffe as part of a European breeding program. If that happens - the timing is uncertain - zookeepers intend to kill their Marius, who is 7, and mate the female with their other male, The Guardian reports.

"If we are told we have to euthanize (Marius), we would of course do that," said zookeeper Janni LĂžjtved Poulsen.

She added that Jyllands Park, in western Denmark, would not be swayed by the fierce reaction to the Copenhagen zoo's destruction of its Marius, who shot in the head, dissected and fed to the lions as spectators watched. The three-hour spectacle was streamed online.

"We are completely behind Copenhagen and would have done the same," she said, adding that her zoo had not decided whether to conduct a public necropsy.

The Copenhagen zoo defended its actions, saying the young giraffe had to be killed to maintain a healthy population. Animal lovers were outraged and some scientists questioned the zoo's rationale. An online petition was launched, and hate mail and threats poured in to the facility.



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: Second Danish zoo may kill another giraffe named Marius

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