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Unusual Break-In at the Knoxville Zoo

Posted on behalf of Greg Coleman Law on Jun 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

Black Bear Breaks Into Knoxville Zoo

"Black Bear Falls is one of the top habitats in the country so maybe word has gotten out in the black bear community," said Lisa New, Executive Director at the Knoxville Zoo, after a black bear broke into the wildlife park on Monday night.

In a bizarre reversal of fortune, a young black bear scaled a 10-foot chain-link and barbed wire fence to enter the zoo at about midnight on Monday. The intruder was initially spotted by a zoo ranger after being sighted in the Chilhowee Park area by a zoo neighbor. The bear was approximately 150 lbs., which indicates he or she was not fully grown.

Immediately after sighting the bear, the zoo ranger alerted his fellow zoo staff members and then the zoo's bear habitat, Black Bear Falls, was checked to make sure the wandering intruder was not, in fact, one of the zoo's four furry friends. Zoo staff also alerted the Knoxville Police Department, the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, and the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency, and wildlife officers were asked to stand by.

Zoo staff members and rangers conducted a search of the park's 53 acres in the early morning hours to see if the bear was still on the grounds; when they didn't find the rambler, the doors of the zoo were opened for visitors.

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