By Marika Garland
Nearly 50 exotic animals escaped from the Muskingum County Animal Farm in Zanesville, Ohio on Tuesday, Oct. 18. The farm, located about 40 miles away from Kenyon, was home to a variety of wild animals, including lions, tigers, cheetahs, wolves, giraffes, camels and bears, according to The New York Times. When police arrived, they found owner Terry Thompson dead and the animals’ cages open and empty.
The Washington Post reported Wednesday, Oct. 19 that several animals had been spotted near Interstate 70 and police had shot and killed most of them, leaving only three still missing. There have been no reports of human injuries, though several schools in the area were closed for safety reasons. “The chances of any animals making it [to Kenyon] would be very limited,” Director of Campus Safety Bob Hooper said.
Some of the escaped animals are known to routinely travel large distances, however, according to the National Geographic Society (NGS). Tigers often travel many miles to hunt, an average male lion’s territory includes approximately 100 square miles and wolves “are known to roam large distances, perhaps 12 miles (20 kilometers) in a single day,” reads the NGS website.
“We will be staying in touch with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office for any additional information,” Hooper said.