When we create settings where people can be up close and personal with wild animals some of us imagine that wild animals have benign feelings about being similarly close to us.
That must be what the woman thought who jumped a barrier to take a selfie near a jaguar at a zoo in Arizona. The jaguar reached through its enclosure and grabbed her arm, injuring her badly enough so that she was transported to a hospital.
The jaguar was being a jaguar. That’s what “opportunistic hunter” means.
I recall years ago being on a tour of the Everglades with a friend. As our small group walked down a path to the boat that was going to take us skimming along the water, we spotted a line of big crocs sunning themselves at water’s edge, about 20 feet away. Some of the crocs had their jaws wide open; all were still as cut-outs, soaking up the warm sun.
Our guide said quietly but firmly that we should walk along rapidly, without doing anything to disturb the crocs. People with children were asked to keep them on the other side of the path.
Our guide was at the back of the line. Despite the warning, one of our party left the group and trotted toward the crocs, camera in hand. The guide literally screamed at him. “Get back on the path. This isn’t f****ing Disney.”
Neither was the jaguar.