Zookeepers in southwest France recently shot four members of a 9 member wolf pack because the wolves left their enclosure. The wolves, recent arrivals at the zoo, exhibited “dangerous behavior,” zoo officials said, leading to the shootings. As a result, the zoo is now closed until late January. The exact nature of the dangerous behavior was not released
The wolves damaged the locks in the enclosure and climbed a fence to escape. The incident occurred during business hours. No injuries were reported. As a result, officials closed the zoo immediately and it remains shut. The animals never left the zoo property. The five remaining animals were returned to their enclosure and anesthetized.
The shooting occurred at the Trois Vallees zoo in Montredon-Labessonnie. The zoo houses some 600 animals. Montredon-Labessonnie is a commune in the mountainous Tarn department and home to about 2,000 people. The zoo sits on about 150 acres of land and houses about 70 species of animals. The zoo was recently ordered shut by the French Ministry of Ecological Transition citing safety and security concerns. A French court overturned the order, ruling the closure had been improperly imposed and illegally impacted the rights of the owners. The ministry, less formally known as the ministry of ecology, was formed about 16 months ago and implements French policy on biodiversity, climate, sustainable development and energy transition.