A wolf escaped from a zoo after gnawing her way out of her enclosure and was only discovered missing when a member of the public drove past.
It is thought the female wolf, who lived in an enclosure with two other wolves became frightened, and bit her way through the thick wire enclosure in a fit of terror. Photo: APEX
An investigation has been launched into how the wolf was able to escape at Combe Martin Wildlife Park, Devon.
Zoo officials believe she had been outside the park perimeter for around half an hour.
It is thought she may have become frightened and bit her way through the thick wire enclosure in a fit of terror.
Combe Martin Wildlife Park spokesman Kat Whitehouse-Tedd said: "During the incident, park authorities said at no time had the wolf posed any sort of threat to humans or other animals and had not been in any danger herself."
She added: "We think she'd been digging, trying to get out, but she obviously couldn't because the wire goes right under the enclosure, so she chewed her way through.
"We think something must have spooked her but we don't know what."
The two other wolves who lived in the same enclosure made no attempt to escape, and Mrs Whitehouse-Tedd said the female wolf was pacing the outside of the enclosure when staff found her, searching for her way back in.
Mrs Whitehouse-Tedd said all the enclosures were checked last thing on Sunday evening, and nothing was wrong with the wolves, so the incident must have happened overnight on Sunday to Monday morning.
As soon as they became aware the wolf was missing, the zoo deployed a firearms team, a vet and the owner of the wolves, Shaun Ellis.
Once the vet arrived a dart gun was used to anaesthetise her and she was recaptured without injury.
Wolf escapes from zoo by gnawing out of enclosure - Telegraph