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30 Sep 2023
Elaine Mallon

NextImg:Watch: Sea Lion at Central Park Zoo Rides Flood out of Its Enclosure

Severe flooding on Friday in New York City allowed a sea lion to escape from its enclosure at the Central Park Zoo.

The sea lion took advantage of the rising flood waters to swim out of its enclosure; however, she was never out of sight of zoo personnel, NBC New York reported.

​​“A female sea lion at Central Park Zoo was able to swim out of her pool due to flooding of the plaza caused by severe rains in New York City today,” said Jim Breheny, director of the Bronx Zoo and executive vice president of the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Zoos and Aquarium.

“Zoo staff monitored the sea lion as she explored the area before returning to the familiar surroundings of the pool and the company of the other two sea lions,” said Breheny. 

Once the waters subsided, the mammal returned to its enclosure. 

With the zoo closed, no guests were in danger, and neither were any staff. Despite false claims circulating on social media, the sea lion never escaped the zoo. 

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By Friday afternoon, Central Park had received 5.6 inches of rain, ABC News reported.

The rising flood waters led both Democrat Mayor Eric Adams and Gov. Kathy Hochul (D-NY) to declare a state of emergency. 

“If you are home, stay home. If you are at work or school, shelter in place for now,” Adams said, according to CBS affiliate WCBS-TV. “Some of our subways are flooded, and it’s extremely difficult to move around the city.”

WATCH — “SEND ME A BOAT!” Brooklyn Gets HAMMERED with Massive Flash Flooding

This is not the first time Breitbart News has reported on a zoo animal’s escape. In January, a clouded leopard escaped from its enclosure at the Dallas Park Zoo through an opening in the fence created by a cutting tool.  

Nova, the clouded leopard, was safely located on zoo grounds, and no one was harmed or injured.