Belfast Telegraph

Amber the red panda found after escaping from Belfast zoo

Amber the red panda cub.
Amber the red panda cub.
Amber the red panda cub.
Amber with her sister, Autumn, and parents, Chris and Vixen.

A red panda that went on the run from Belfast Zoo has been found safe and well.

Police said the animal, named Amber, went missing early on Sunday and may have headed toward Glengormley.

They urged the public to not approach the animal and for drivers to be extra vigilant.

Folks.. earlier today a red panda decided to take a surprise vacation from Belfast zoo, it is believed to be currently...

Posted by Police Service of Northern Ireland on Sunday, January 27, 2019

Following several public appeals, on Monday afternoon Belfast Zoo took to social media stating that Amber had been found. It emerged she had been discovered in Collinbridge, a residential area within a mile of the zoo's grounds.

They wrote: "We are happy to report that the missing red panda has been located and is being returned to its home at Belfast Zoo - thanks to everyone for their help with the search!"

Alyn Cairns, manager of Belfast Zoo, said they received calls from residents that helped track down the escapee, who got out of her enclosure due to a fault in an electric fence, which has since been repaired.

"Red pandas are an endangered species and are facing a high risk of extinction due to habitat loss and illegal hunting," she added.

"We were delighted to announce the birth of Amber and her sister Autumn in June 2018 and hope to continue successful breeding of this species in future.

"Following the initial report of the escape, we discovered a power fault in an electric fence in red panda habitat. Our maintenance team were informed at the earliest opportunity and the fence has since been repaired.

"Safety and security of our animals is of paramount importance so we will continue to monitor this to ensure there are no further incidents."

On her return to the zoo, Amber was checked by a vet and was found to be in good health.

PSNI Newtownabbey have also shared a picture of the red panda cub loitering on an unsuspecting resident's driveway before she was returned home.

It was not black and white when reports came in this morning to Newtownabbey PSNI in relation to suspicious activity in...

Posted by PSNI Newtownabbey on Monday, January 28, 2019

In a statement, Belfast City Council thanked members of the public who assisted in the search.

"We are pleased to report that the red panda which escaped from its enclosure at Belfast Zoo on Sunday has been located," a spokesperson said.

"It is safe and well and has been returned to the zoo.

"The red panda had been reported missing from Belfast Zoo yesterday afternoon with a sighting first reported around 5.30pm. Belfast Zoo immediately began a search for the animal which continued today.

"Local residents had been asked to report any sightings immediately to Belfast Zoo and we are grateful to members of the public who assisted with the search."

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