ZooAmerica flood update: One bison drowned, second shot

Hersheypark has released new information about the flood-related deaths of two bison at a zoo Wednesday.

Officials with ZooAmerica, which is part of Hersheypark, had reported that both bison were shot because out of fear they were drowning in the swollen waters of Spring Creek and could not be rescued.

Now the park says one bison drowned and that zoo staff was forced to humanely euthanize the other by gunshot because it would have drowned in the fast-moving moving waters.

 The incident sparked an angry flurry of blog posts and criticisms of the zoo on newspaper websites, Facebook and Twitter. Some wondered why the zoo didn't relocate the buffalo when it had two days notice of the flooding. Others sympathized with the zoo staff trying to move 200 animals to safety during a fast-developing disaster.

On its blog, ZooAmerica said staff there were saddened by the deaths of the two bison: 13-year-old Ryan and 15-year-old Esther. Both were born at the zoo.