Drama at German Zoo: Escaped Penguin Ends Up in Lion Enclosure

A little penguin intent on seeing the world strolled out of her ice-covered pool and ended up in the lion enclosure of the Münster Zoo in western Germany. Zookeepers armed with herrings tried to rescue her in a race against time, as the big cats dozed nearby.

The penguin wandering around Münster Zoo's lion enclosure. Zoom
Allwetterzoo Münster

The penguin wandering around Münster Zoo's lion enclosure.

An adventurous penguin that had escaped from its pool at a German zoo took a wrong turn and ended up in the lion enclosure, the zoo in the western city of Münster said on Monday.

A visitor spotted the three-month-old bird, the zoo's youngest African Penguin, strolling up and down the ice-covered moat alongside the enclosure on New Year's Day, blissfully unaware of the proximity of a pride of lions.

"Luckily the family of lions didn't pose a threat because they were dozing in the warmth of their house," the zoo said in a statement. But the penguin was still in danger because she could have panicked and slipped under the ice.

A zookeeper managed to lure the penguin out a day later with a trail of herrings. The adventure prompted the zoo to name the bird "Leona" in a departure from its practice of just assigning numbers to its penguins.

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