Around 1 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23, Andean bear Ben once again got out of his outdoor habitat. The Zoo Animal Emergency Response protocol was implemented and various team members responded accordingly.
Guests and staff on grounds were quickly escorted into various indoor facilities while team members secured Ben, which took approximately 50 minutes from start to finish.
On Feb. 7, Ben got out by meddling with the steel mesh in just the right spot of the outdoor habitat, causing a cable to give way, which then allowed him to work his way out. Since then, team members made the habitat even more secure by adding stainless steel cargo clips rated at 450 pounds tensile strength, yet that wasn’t enough for Ben. At four years old, we know Ben is young and adventurous. Our team will continue to work collaboratively and consult with the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) Bear Taxon Advisory Group (TAG) to investigate other alternative ways to secure the habitat.