BALTIMORE, MD – Today at approximately 10:58 am, one of the Zoo’s saddle-billed storks left her habitat at the African Watering Hole, took a short flight and landed in a public pathway near the Giraffe Feeding Station. Zoo staff were immediately notified of the breach and safely caught the stork within five minutes of the alert. She was returned to her night quarters by 11:03 am. There were no injuries to guests, staff or the stork.
Maryland Zoo staff are trained to respond to unexpected situations. The animal response team routinely conducts on-site drills to prepare for a variety of scenarios that could occur at the Zoo including animal escapes, human or animal injuries and severe weather. The Zoo credits this training with the very quick response and resolution that prevented the situation from becoming dangerous for the bird or anyone involved.
The public was never at risk during this time. Zoo staff will be reviewing the incident, as well as the incident response, and will make changes in procedures as necessary.