Scooter the Llama made headlines this week when he became the latest animal to try to escape Florida. It took three officers and one Taser to subdue the 6-foot-tall, 7-year-old fugitive, according to the AP.
Scooter is just one of the many animals that have tried to escape the caged life over the past few years, and it’s not exclusive to Florida. Here are some more high-profile animals that made a run for it.
• Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay
No fugitive animal captured the nation’s attention more than one Floridian monkey did back in 2009. Americans were so captivated by this elusive monkey that it was given the moniker, “Mystery Monkey of Tampa Bay,” and a Facebook fan page to go with it –- to which about 86,000 people remain fans even today. The mystery monkey has since been caught, but the four years it spent on the run that the mystery monkey spent is practically unrivaled in the world of runaway animals.
• Runaway Lovers: Zebra and Mini Horse
Forbidden love. Runaway companions. What more could one ask for in an escaped animal narrative? One afternoon in late November 2012, Casper the Mini Horse and Razzi the Zebra made their escape. Just two unlikely equidae companions galloping into the distance. Perhaps the scene was not quite so poetic –- it did, after all, take place in Staten Island. Nonetheless, video footage of a zebra following a horse through one of the five boroughs is not something you see every day, and definitely worth a view.
• Holy Slop, Monster Pig!
What’s so special about a runaway pig in North Carolina? See for yourself. Somewhere in this pig’s ancestry must lie a bear. The pig’s unfortunate apprehension was rather fortunate for residents of Greensborough, who are confident that they will never run out of bacon.
• Runaway Ostrich Causes Traffic Crashes in China
According to the Global Times, a wild ostrich that escaped from its cage this past Monday was the cause of several car crashes in China. (The wild ostrich is insisting that the crashes were caused by bad Chinese drivers.) Despite being hit by oncoming cars on two different occasions, no ostriches or Chinese drivers were killed in the crashes.
• The Penguin of Tokyo
In March 2012, this penguin escaped a Japanese zoo. In an attempt to explain the penguin’s escape, Takashi Sugino, an official at Tokyo Sea Life Park, said, “Of course it can’t fly, but sometimes wildlife have an ‘explosive’ power when frightened by something. Maybe it ran up the rock after being surprised.” More likely is that the penguin was able to sneak by Sugino by using the highly acclaimed smile-and-wave technique. It’s Lost in Translation travels ended when it was captured 82 days later.
• What’s the Matter With This Kansas Alligator?
Fleeing Kansas is nothing new, twister or no twister. Finding alligators in Kansas is a bit less common. The reptile escaped from a home in 2011 but was captured about a week later by two residents using a fishing pole. The gator’s owner could face a fine of up to $1,000.
• Central Park is no place for animals
While Central Park is a place of respite from the hubbub for many New Yorkers, it’s also a place that multiple animals have tried desperately to escape. In August of 2012, a horse pulling a carriage of passengers bolted from its reins and promptly crashed into a parked van, and then a moving car. In August 2011, a peacock escaped the Central Park Zoo, perching itself on the ledge of a building five stories up. It’s unconfirmed whether either animal was suicidal.
• Bronx Zoo Cobra, sure, but also this Peahen
In slightly more than a two-month period in the spring of 2011, the Bronx Zoo managed to lose a cobra and a peahen. All indications are that the zoo visitors were more worried about the cobra than the peahen. Go figure. Two years later, @BronxZoosCobra still has 188,000 Twitter followers.
• Grantham Cow
In March, England’s Cow Team 4 caught and killed its top terrorist threat. It was a proud day in the city of Grantham as the four marksmen and eight police officers were able to utilize their snipers and five patrol cars to outwit and gun down a rebel cow. Not to mention, the whole episode occurred in front of a primary school.
• Zebra likes Atlanta traffic
We all hate traffic, but one zebra decided he’d rather deal with it than sit in a cage for the Ringling Brothers Circus. In 2010, the zebra escaped from its pen and somehow made it onto Atlanta’s downtown interstate during rush hour. Luckily, the zebra wasn’t seriously hurt, but it did hurt the egos of the police officers that were chasing a zebra down a friggin’ interstate.
• Friggin’ Buffalo also makes Atlanta Escape
Another animal got loose on Atlanta’s roads, but this time it didn’t have a pretty ending. A buffalo somehow fell off a traveling trailer on Interstate 20 in February 2010. Unfortunately, it was injured during the tumble. Unable to walk, Atlanta Police “had to put the buffalo down” due to its injuries. RIP.
Got any more good ones? Throw them in the comments below …