Thursday, March 24, 2011

Knut the polar bear may be stuffed.

From Time:
Even in death, the world's most famous polar bear can't escape the spotlight.

On March 23, it emerged that the deceased polar bear may be stuffed and put on display in Berlin's Natural History Museum. “It is true that our taxidermists are working on his corpse and have removed his fur,” Gesine Steiner, a spokeswoman for the museum, told Bloomberg. “We haven't yet made a decision on whether we will stuff him and exhibit him. We have to talk to the zoo. We do of course have lots of stuffed zoo animals on show here.”

Four-year old Knut—who shot to fame after his mother rejected him and his human keepers decided to rear him themselves—passed away in his enclosure at the Berlin Zoo on March 19. Three vets began examining the 661-pound animal on March 22, and a taxidermist observed the procedure to ensure that Knut's fur remained in tact.

Plans to stuff the bear have left several of his fans in dismay. “To stuff Knut is to abuse the feelings of millions of Knut fans all over the world,” one fan, Horst Krause, wrote in the zoo's online condolence book. “Knut deserves a worthy burial.”

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