Giraffe escapes Indiana zoo enclosure, runs loose for 2 hours

April 24 (UPI) — An Indiana zoo confirmed that a giraffe escaped from its enclosure and ran loose for about two hours, but never left zoo grounds.

The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo said Thabisa, the zoo’s youngest female reticulated giraffe, snapped the cables surrounding her enclosure around noon Monday by repeatedly running into them.

Thabisa made her way to a fenced parking lot that officials said was not available to the public. She was seen running around the parking lot and nearby buildings for about two hours. She was captured about 2 p.m.

“Thanks for all of your concern for her safety, but after realizing our nonpublic parking lot outside the giraffe barn wasn’t that exciting, she decided to go back into the barn all on her own,” the zoo, which opened for the season on Saturday, said in a statement issued to WANE-TV. “She remained on zoo property for the duration of her adventure, and is now resting safely behind the scenes.”

The zoo said officials are re-evaluating the security of the giraffe exhibit and will take extra steps to protect the animals and visitors.

The zoo previously made headlines for a 2004 incident involving the escape of five wildebeests that gave employees the slip while being moved to a barn for the winter. The wildebeests made their way to city streets and two later had to be euthanized as a result of injuries incurred during their time on the loose.

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