CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wis. - Vandals tried to release the animals at the Irvine (IR'-vin) Park Zoo in Chippewa Falls by cutting locks and prying open fences, prompting officials to close the park to vehicle traffic on Wednesday.

Chippewa Falls Parks and Recreation Director William Faherty says the overnight release of the animals was intentional. As of Wednesday afternoon, most of them were back in the enclosures. A porcupine and two other small animals were missing. One animal was in a tree.

At 6:15 a.m. Wednesday, a passer-by found the gate to the buffalo exhibit was open. Faherty says the eight buffalo had wandered as far as the bear dens before returning to their area to feed. They were secured after that.

Another zoo worker says there was damage to the lower fences holding porcupines and coatimundi.

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Information from: The Chippewa Herald, http://www.chippewa.com 

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Carole's comment:

Releasing zoo animals is both cruel to the animal and a set back to the movement to consider the plight of animals held captive for human entertainment. The notion that zoo animals are happy to be in cages is equally offensive. Zoo animals are not equipped to care for themselves, and may resort to returning to cages, when they cannot escape the zoo grounds and can find no food, but that is no indication that they are content with the lousy hand that man has dealt them. Carole Baskin, CEO Big Cat Rescue Tampa, FL

makeadifference (08/25/2009, 3:05 PM )