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Dallas Zoo monkey enclosure fence cut same day as ‘intentional act’ led to leopard escape



The fence that was cut at the Dallas Zoo’s clouded leopard habitat on Friday — causing one of the animals to flee — wasn’t the only tampering apparent at the zoo that day, police said.

“Zoo staff showed investigators a similar cut found in habitat that contained a breed of monkey known as Langurs,” the Dallas Police Department said in a news release.

A clouded leopard named Nova went missing on Friday morning after its enclosure was opened in what police called “an intentional act”, prompting the closure of the zoo.

The leopard was found safe and sound on Friday evening on the grounds of the zoo, which reopened on Saturday. Despite the cut fence, none of the langurs escaped.

Dallas police said the cutting of the two enclosures is still under investigation. “It is not known if the two incidents are related,” police said on Saturday.

Clouded leopards are classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to habitat loss and poaching.

According to the World Wildlife Fund, there are around 10,000 big cats left in the wild across Southeast Asia.

Leopards typically weigh between 11 and 20 kilograms, or 24 and 44 pounds, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

The zoo said Nova was undergoing a veterinary examination on Friday evening, but there were no initial signs of injury.

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