Cobra Escapes from Bronx Zoo

There is always a risk when you keep a wild animal in captivity, and part of that risk includes them escaping. Although we have come a long way lately in protecting the public from dangerous animals held in captivity, it seems they still are getting loose and possibly posing a danger to everyone involved.

ABC News reports that a poisonous Egyptian cobra escaped from the Bronx Zoo in New York this past weekend. After the cobra escaped, the Bronx Zoo officials took steps to ensure the safety of the public by closing off the building which housed the cobra and several other snakes. The building was closed down for the weekend in an effort to keep the snake on zoo grounds and hopefully stop it from escaping out into the streets, although some people are still worried. With no whereabouts from the snake, zoo officials believe that it is somewhere near the Reptile House.

This is not the first time there has been an animal in captivity that has escaped its enclosure and become a possible danger to the public. CNN reports that during the Dutch Circus in the Netherlands, a giraffe led a stampede out of the enclosure. The stampede included pot-belly pigs, 15 camels and llamas all wandering into the streets in surrounding neighborhoods. The stampede got animals in the neighborhood all excited and people were watching from their windows as the wild animals strolled around without a care in the world. It did not take long, however, for police and zoo officials, including animal trainers, to get into the area and take the animals back into custody.

MSNBC reports that a 300-pound gorilla was shot and killed after escaping an enclosure in a Dallas Zoo and injuring four people. The gorilla, named Jabari, somehow managed to escape the enclosure and began charging at the public in the area with zoo officials chasing the gorilla through the forested jungles of the Wilds of Africa exhibit. The zoo officials were armed with tranquilizer guns but could not find a clear shot, so when the officers arrived and the animal charged at them, Jabari was shot dead.

The Age reports that Satara, a sex-crazed rhino, went on a rampage at South Australia’s Monarto Zoo in 2008. The rhino broke through his enclosure, which included steel bars, as he saw another bull trying to get a little too friendly with his girlfriend. Satara was eventually captured by zoo officials after they shot him with a tranquilizer gun in order to keep him from leaving the grounds. No one was injured in Satara’s sex-crazed love triangle situation and officials were trying to figure out just how he managed to break through his enclosure.

Given how these events turned out, the people in the Brox, New York, should be on alert but not worry too much. Zoo officials and trainers seem to know what they are doing and they will find the cobra soon enough. New Yorkers should always back away from wild animals and call animal control or the cops if they see the cobra, and probably should not try to touch it or capture it. If the people just act calm if they come across the cobra and call the proper animal control authorities, everything will work out without incident.

Ki Mae Heussner, “What Should You Do If You Spot a Poisonous Snake?”, ABC News

Saeed Ahmed, “Giraffe Gathers Troops, Leads Great Escape from Circus”, CNN

Associated Press and MSNBC Staff, “Gorilla’s escape, violent rampage stun zoo officials”, MSNBC

AAP, “Zoo chaos as sex-crazed rhino goes on rampage”, The Age