National Zoo taking no chances of another escape

  • Article by: BRETT ZONGKER
  • Associated Press
  • July 16, 2013 - 1:59 PM

WASHINGTON — The National Zoo has been inspecting vegetation around all of its exhibits to ensure animal enclosures are secure after the great escape of a young male red panda last month.

According to a zoo report on the escape that The Associated Press obtained following a public records request, the zoo has been investigating and observing the red panda named Rusty ever since he was found in a nearby neighborhood.

The zoo's investigation found Rusty likely escaped late June 23 or early June 24 through the tree limbs hanging low in his exhibit.

Animal keepers have kept watch on Rusty's activity by day and night. He returned to his public exhibit July 9.

The incident prompted the zoo to begin regular checks of all vegetation around enclosures to ensure animal containment.

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