The fate of 17-day-old Til, a bunny with a genetic defect, was plastered across German newspapers on Thursday, the same day a small zoo in Saxony was to have presented him to the world at a press conference.
The cameraman told Bild newspaper he hadn’t seen Til, who had buried himself in hay, when he took the fateful step backward Wednesday.
Zoo director Uwe Dempewolf told Spiegel magazine Til didn’t suffer: “It was a direct hit.” The magazine described him as “still shaken” as he spoke of the tragedy.
“No one could have foreseen this,” he told the magazine. “Everyone here is upset. The cameraman was distraught.”
Rabbits without ears are “pretty rare” he said. “The other five bunnies are right as rain. It is regrettable that he was the one who got stepped on.
Spiegel called the tragic bunny a “victim of the media”.
You’re laughing? What is the matter with you?
First Knut the polar bear. Then Paul the octupus. Now Til the bunny. Germany's latest celebrity animal dies… http://t.co/A2yMYoWL
— Guardian World (@guardianworld) March 15, 2012
Celebrity does not pay in Germany: Til the earless bunny crushed to death in shoot meant to launch him into global fame http://t.co/kFdHqhrX
— VR (@heyessa) March 15, 2012
— Laura Fraser (@laurajanefraser) March 15, 2012
'Til.. someone steps on you. Germany's earless bunny killed by a TV cameraman. http://t.co/z1fH21ie
— Laurie Allan (@lajeer) March 15, 2012