On Tuesday, around 6:45 p.m., Joseph Carrao was with his family in the park’s Jambo Junction animal viewing area when he reached into a pen and picked up a Chilean flamingo named Pinky. Witnesses told police Carrao, 45, then slammed it into the ground “in a rage.”
“Pinky was immediately transported to the park’s Animal Care Center were veterinarians made the decision to humanely euthanize her based on the severity of her injuries,” according to a statement from the park.
Tampa police were called and Carrao was taken into custody and charged with felony animal cruelty.
Busch Gardens said “Pinky was a beloved member of the Busch Gardens Tampa Bay family and made many appearances on behalf of the park’s conservation and education efforts. She will be sorely missed.”