When an animal escapes from its captivity, many times they are found quite easily. They tend to be quite easy to spot: just look for the domestic animals running scared of their exotic friends. However, when a flamingo escaped, it escaped for the best part of a decade. An escaped animal is always fun to watch on the news for the drama it causes, but this flamingo managed to more or less escape without any problem.
Escaped zoo flamingo, on the lam since 2005, spotted near Lavaca Bay by our Coastal crew.
The African Flamingo made its break from a Kansas zoo after keepers failed to clip its wings, and has been spotted in several states since. pic.twitter.com/zsoYBf48Aa
— TX Parks & Wildlife (@TPWDnews) June 25, 2018
It all started in 2005, when ‘Number 492’ managed to escape from the Sedgwick County Zoo, Kansas. The Tanzanian flamingo had arrived a year early alongside another 38 of his buddies, but seemingly wasn’t too keen on his new surroundings.
By escaping the zoo, it managed to fly under the radar for over a decade. The bird managed to get out, and it left a tiny stain on the reputation of the facility given it was never found. To this day, people at the center at “not fond” of the story being brought up. Since they were adults on arrival, their wings could not be clipped in a humane fashion. It’s not sore for a young bird, but agony for an adult.
This meant that the flamingos had to be trimmed, meaning that they would stay grounded humanely. This needed to be repeated a lot, though, and in June 2005 this one bird took advantage of the tardiness to clip his/her wings and made off.
The great escape
Staying in the local area for a short time the flamingo eventually decided to head off. A storm meant that the weather was too severe to get out and collect the bird from escape, and it took the best part of a decade to hunt the bird done. 492 managed to get all the way to Texas, and appears to be living it up in the most cheerful manner possible.
Indeed, it even appears to have found another flamingo – named HDNT from its own tag – and they appear to have become friends, perhaps even more. Since flamingos are able to live in the wild for so long, it’s going to be interesting to see what the future holds for this amazing pair of flamingos.
What is the oddest non-native animal that you have seen in your area? Have you ever come across an escapee from a zoo who appears to have started a new life?
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When an animal escapes from its captivity, many times they are found quite easily. They tend to be quite easy to spot: just look for the domestic animals running scared of their exotic friends. However, when a flamingo escaped, it escaped for the best part of...