By Richard Spillett for MailOnline
Published: 16:45 GMT, 11 February 2019 | Updated: 16:56 GMT, 11 February 2019
London Zoo has insisted keepers could not have foreseen or stopped a fatal attack by a male tiger on its potential mate which unfolded 'in a split second'.
Ten-year-old female tiger Melati was mauled to death by seven-year-old male Asim when keepers allowed the pair to meet for the first time at the central London zoo on Friday.
The zoo's CEO Kathryn England today said the attack led to 'one of the most difficult days of my long career working with animals'.
She insisted there was no sign the animals would react how they did and they had been 'calling and "chuffing" [making friendly noises] to each other' before they were allowed in the same enclosure.
Ten-year-old female tiger Melati was mauled to death by her