‘Chaos’ as monkey escapes from enclosure at zoo

Many people spoke in praise of the staff for their handling of the situation

Matt Drake
Tuesday 22 August 2023 14:59 BST
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<p>Guests were evacuated to a restaurant while staff captured the animal</p>

Guests were evacuated to a restaurant while staff captured the animal

A monkey escaped from a zoo in Devon today, sparking a "code red" as guests were evacuated.

Paignton Zoo descended into "chaos" as workers tried to desperately recapture the animals.

Visitors were hurried to safety in the restaurant as rumours flew around about what kind of animal was on the loose.

One visitor tweeted: "Having a summer fun day at Paignton Zoo and we've all been hurried to safety urgently. Rumour of tigers on the loose."

Another said: “At Paignton Zoo and we've all been turfed into the restaurant because an animal has escaped.”

Many people spoke in praise of the staff for their handling of the situation, with one person saying: "Well done zoo animal team for recapturing safely."

And another said: "It was really well handled - we were in lemur wood, diverted around way from the ape house area, and just made a detour around past the birds and red pandas instead of past the rhinos.

"Top marks to the staff for keeping everyone safe and keeping us calm!”

A guest told DevonLive: "Guests were enclosed in certain areas and stopped from going to the bottom end of the zoo. Add that onto all play areas closed, crocodile swamp and giraffe house all closed, it's chaos.”

Luckily, the monkey was recaptured and people were quickly allowed back out of the restaurant. It isn't known how the money escaped the enclosure.

Paignton Zoo said in a statement: "Earlier today, staff at Paignton Zoo had to attend to an incident involving an escaped monkey.

"As a precautionary measure, zoo visitors were evacuated from the area in accordance with our well-rehearsed escaped animal procedure and the animal was re-captured without incident shortly after the alert was raised.

"We are currently investigating how this incident occurred and would like to thank everyone who was at the zoo this morning for their patience and cooperation."

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