Escapes of wild animals from circuses or zoos can sometimes be extremely tragic, especially when it involves dangerous animals such as elephants or big cats, which do not hesitate to savagely attack anyone who gets in their way. In the town of Monreale in Italy, the carabinieri had to arm themselves with hardened steel nerves to deal with a splendid specimen of a white tiger that had escaped from a local circus. The big tomcat, who must have been weighing in at 250 kg, had wandered for almost two hours through the deserted streets of the city, before finally finding himself cornered by the police in a sort of cage especially improvised for the occasion. The villagers, terribly worried, who had been hiding in their homes following a local alert concerning the escapade of the beast, were finally able to take a breath and thank the police for their quick and effective intervention.
As we have seen, wild animals in captivity can be aces of escape, and no pen or cage would be sufficient to keep them indoors against their will. This time it was three female rhinos, who decided to emulate the trio of escapees from the famous 1962 Alcatraz escape and managed to sneak out of their safari zoo in Ramat Gan, Israel. Taking advantage of the guard’s inattention, the three pachyderms, with the sweet names of Rihanna, Keren Peles, and Karnabella, were caught by the surveillance cameras, quietly trotting towards the path to freedom with the doors wide open. Once outside, the three fugitives took a short 10–minute walk in the asphalt parking lot, which surprised them to no end, before finally being able to return inside the zoo, on their own and in complete peace, just as they had come out a few minutes earlier. It must be said that the zoo officials were very lucky that there was no incident, especially considering the Herculean strength of these animals, which can measure up to 4 meters and weigh more than two tons. A real tank!
They say that history repeats itself, but they also say that we learn from our mistakes! Not for the keepers of the Ramat Gan safari zoo anyway. As we saw earlier with the opportunistic escape of the three Miss Rhinos who rushed outside the zoo’s wide–open doors, this time it was the turn of another pachyderm to escape in the same way. An adult hippopotamus weighing at least two tons seized the opportunity that the zoo’s doors were forgotten to be closed, and happily swooped through it to reach the freedom and the great expanses of water of his dreams. But just a few minutes after his escape, the fugitive hippo decided to go back inside, disappointed to have found only a banal tarred parking lot and metal boxes on wheels outside, he who had expected to find himself facing a good old African river. The harsh reality played in favor of the guards of this Israeli safari zoo, made world–famous for the big blunders of its staff, and the repeated escapes of its pachyderms.