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Knut's real fur used for new museum statue
Photo: DPA

Knut's real fur used for new museum statue

Published: 12 Feb 2013 14:52 GMT+01:00
Updated: 12 Feb 2013 14:52 GMT+01:00

A furry homage or creepy exploitation? Nearly two years after the death of Berlin's favourite polar bear Knut, the city's natural history museum is using his pelt for a new exhibit.

The German capital's star animal attraction tragically died at the age of four in March 2011 after he drowned following a seizure in his enclosure at the Berlin Zoo.

But the bear that captured the hearts of millions after he was raised by hand as tiny cub remains immensely popular in Germany, encouraging the museum to create a full-sized Knut model covered in his own pelt.

"It's important to make clear we haven't had Knut stuffed," museum spokeswoman Gesine Steiner told the daily newspaper Bild on Tuesday. "It's an artistically valuable sculpture with the original fur."

The new Knut will only be shown for four weeks starting this Saturday.

"We are creating an extra entrance into the museum solely for Knut visitors," Steiner said.

The sculpture will then disappear into the museum's archives until 2014, when it will be wheeled out for an exhibition on climate change and protecting the environment.

But Knut's fans creeped out by seeing him skinned can instead head to the Berlin Zoo, which unveiled a cute bronze memorial to him in October 2012.

Photobucket

Click here for a Knut photo gallery

The Local/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

17:53 February 12, 2013 by bwjijsdtd
It's nice to know they did not have him stuffed ... they just ripped the skin off of him and are now going to make a rug out of him ... damn ...
18:04 February 12, 2013 by Englishted
If he had died at the age in the bottom photo he would have made a great hat.
18:24 February 12, 2013 by raandy
They got mega money out of that bear and the beat goes on.
20:11 February 12, 2013 by marimay
It is disgusting that they continue to try to profit on that poor bear's miserable existence.
23:41 February 12, 2013 by IchBinKönig
'Sqwaaaaaa!! Get offa my lawn !!'

Lol. chill out people. You would have preferred it incinerated, buried? At least with this they might be able to hustle a few more Euros out of the deal. I heard a rumor you still could use some of those.
22:36 February 13, 2013 by randyjoe
Question for Gesine Steiner--Why do you feel it neccessary to lie to the public by saying the bear was not stuffed? A lifesize, lifelike sculpture with an animal's hide positioned over it to recreate a lifelike image of that animal is called TAXIDERMY!! Some uneducated people still use the term stuffed, but what taxidermy is and what you have there is a MOUNT, or a mounted polar bear hide. Ms. Steiner, do youself and the public a favor and don't patronize and deliberately mislead.

Randy Miller, Taxidermist, USA.
09:02 February 17, 2013 by DerHirsch
I just hope they won't be doing the same with his trainer Thomas Dörflein who also died.
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