LONDON – The court lasted 10 full days. They were separated, but very close to each other so that everyone could see, hear and feel each other.

When the smugglers believed that the time and place were right – Friday at London Zoo – the rare Sumatran tiger named Asim and a female named Melati were placed in the same enclosure to be potential partners.

He quickly killed her – moments after their first presentation.

[[[[Read: Could a tiger tragedy have been avoided?]

The animal handlers rushed to intervene, said the zoo, "using loud noises, flares and alarms to distract the couple, but Asim had already mastered Melati."

The guards were finally able to take Asim to a separate enclosure to be able to go safely to Melati, the zoo announced. The vets then confirmed that she was dead.

"At ZSL London Zoo, everyone is devastated by the loss of Melati and we are sorry for this turn of events", the zoo added in a statement.

Melati was 10 years old and lived in the zoo for a long time. Asim, 7, arrived from Ree Park Safari in Denmark on Jan. 29 with a whistling announcement.New bands in town. "

"Asim has been driven to the zoo in a custom-designed travel case filled with exceptional travel essentials for tigers: hot straw, air conditioning, snacks and beverages," says the zoo's release.

The tiger keeper, Kathryn Sanders, described Asim as "a beautiful, confident cat, known to be very affectionate with the ladies of his life – we hope that he will be the perfect companion of our beautiful Melati."

The match was organized as part of a European conservation program for Sumatran tigers, an endangered subspecies. The Sumatran tiger is found in the wild only on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, and the World Wildlife Fund says that there are fewer than 400 today, compared to about 1,000 in 1978.

The zoo was optimistic about the good agreement between the two animals: "We are still in the early stages, but we have already seen good signs – there has been a lot of" chuffing ", which is a joyous sound to be made know that they have good intentions.

"It's fantastic to see that they are already interested in each other."

But things went wrong.

The tigers were placed in the same compound after "careful monitoring," said the zoo, and experts "felt the timing was right."

He added: "As with all big cats, even carefully planned introductions are still considered high risk."

The animals "were initially cautious," but the introduction "quickly became a more aggressive interaction."

Asim mutilated Melati to death.

The tiger section was closed on Friday and the guardians focused on caring for Asim – whose name, says the zoo, "means" protector "in Arabic."

The Regent's Park Zoo in London dates back to the 19th century and is home to more than 20,000 animals. It describes itself as the oldest science zoo in the world. It is estimated that he receives more than a million visitors each year and has already witnessed a tragedy.

In 2017, a fire is declared in the Animal Adventure section, killing a 9-year-old aardvark named Misha and leaving staff members suffering from smoke inhalation.

A half-petting zoo, a souvenir shop and a café were destroyed, according to London firefighters. Four missing meerkats were presumed dead.