Brand SpotlightHogle Zoo


Hogle Zoo record: three big animal escapes since 1999

Posted at 8:11 PM, Jun 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-07 22:11:34-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- Three big animal escapes have happened at Hogle Zoo in the past 20 years, with only one of the escapes ending in harm to the animals and people.

On Tuesday, The female Amur Leopard, Zeya,was spotted by a guest outside of its exhibit in the Asian Highlands around 9:30 a.m. The 4-year-old, 60-pound-cat, was sleeping on a beam about 15 feet in the air just outside the fence to her cage.

One tranquilizer dart brought the animal into safety.

The last time an animal escaped at Hogle Zoo was in February of 1999, when two chimpanzees got through a door that was supposed to be secured, attacking two zookeepers and severely injuring one. The zoo put the two chimps down and sent their last chimp to a zoo in Wichita, Kansas.

Hogle Zoo is not alone among zoos dealing with escaped animals, though it’s experienced more than its share.

The Association for Zoos and Aquariums told the Kansas City Star that their 213 organizations experience an average of five escapes a year. That would mean 85 escapes in the 17 years since the Chimpanzee attack at Hogle, or .4 escapes for every zoo and aquarium.