54 stingrays die at Chicago-area zoo when oxygen level drops

AP News
Posted: Jul 12, 2015 4:29 PM

CHICAGO (AP) — Officials say all 54 stingrays in a popular exhibit at a suburban Chicago zoo died because the oxygen levels in their tank dropped too low.

The Chicago Zoological Society released a statement Saturday saying the four southern stingrays and 50 cow-nose rays in the Brookfield Zoo exhibit were in a shallow pool that allows visitors to touch and feed the creatures. Most died Friday afternoon.

Bill Zeigler, a senior vice president at the society, says zoo staffers worked hard to try to save the rays and are devastated by their deaths.

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The society says the staff is working to get the tank's oxygen levels back to normal and that the seasonal exhibit will remain closed for the rest of the summer.