Last Saint Louis Zoo polar bear dies

Associated Press - March 31, 2009 9:54 PM ET

ST. LOUIS (AP) - The last polar bear at the St. Louis Zoo has died.
Zoo officials say the 23-year-old bear named Hope was euthanized Monday after showing advanced signs of liver cancer.
Her appetite and activity had dropped in recent days, and her condition was discovered after an ultrasound and exploratory surgery were performed.
Hope had arrived at the St. Louis Zoo in 1986, eventually becoming the zoo's last polar bear. Her sister, Penny, died nearly three years ago.
The zoo's curator of carnivores, Steve Bircher, described Hope as a longtime favorite of zoo staff and visitors. He says she will be "greatly missed."

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.