A magnificent 17-year-old endangered Silverback gorilla is dead and a 4-year-old child is alive today and in the end, that is the way it had to be.
Harambe the gorilla from a Cincinnati zoo was killed on the weekend for a reason and it’s a good one.
The powerful, wild animal was shot dead after a 4-year-old boy somehow managed to fall into its enclosure. Up until that Sunday, the barrier had been effective for 38 years.
We've seen the footage. A little boy in a moat of water and Harambe suddenly dragging him by a foot up stream. Then down stream. Sudden. Strong. People above screaming and filming.
The screams rise. The gorilla is behind something and we can't see. Then a shot.
Images of the gentle way the gorilla moved the child were released today and thousands have been vocal about how angry they are over the decision to shoot-to-kill rather than tranquilise.
But this anger is misplaced. There was a single and clear choice on that Sunday. It was the choice between a 4-year- old boy and a gorilla. The boy wins.
The shot that killed Harambe was a necessity.
It needed to be a bullet and not a tranquiliser as zoo staff knew tranquilizers would take too long to immobilise - and can also cause aggression.
Do you really believe that the trained animal caretakers, who have looked after, fed cared for and taken these endangered animals to medical appointments would have wanted to shoot Harambe?
Chief executive of Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire, Dr Sharon Redrobe told Metro why a tranquiliser would have been ineffective.
"Tranquillising the gorilla with a dart just simply wouldn’t have worked in this situation," she said. "It would have taken up to 10 minutes to take affect and the animal may have become violent which would have had catastrophic consequences."
The death of Harambe could not be avoided. If it could have been avoided it would have. The workers at Cincinnati Zoo loved Harambe.
Mourners must remember that Harambe - however gentle he appeared - was also a 200kg wild animal and wild animals are unpredictable.
Countless are the instances where a loving family dog has suddenly turned, where a tame creature has acted out and even where a gorilla has attacked a woman and pulled her into its enclosure.