Quirky News

  • 6 February 2014, 10:55

Costumed keeper in Japanese zoo drill

A zoo in Japan has held an emergency drill to prepare for a disaster scenario in which animals manage to break free from enclosures.

The exercise included dressing up a volunteer as a gorilla which manages to escape.

The costume-wearing employee ran through the zoo before being overwhelmed by other workers with nets and "sedated".

Natsumi Uno, who donned the costume, said: "In our work, there may be times when we need to capture an animal, but we would never be the ones being captured.

"So I tried to feel what an animal might feel and realised that when they're on the run, they would be scared. That's how I felt."

More than 150 staff members were joined by members of police and fire departments during the drill at Ueno Zoo in Tokyo.

Toshimitsu Doi, the zoo's director, said the drill was successful.

He said: "It's important to take these opportunities to remember what needs to be done."

Ueno Zoo has had escape scares in the past, the most recent being a monkey that escaped from its enclosure in 2010.

Drills of this nature happen every two years and have previously involved the simulated escapes of a rhinoceros and a tiger.

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