A red panda went missing on January 24th from the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk. As of this writing, the animal is still at large.
The escape of exotic animals from zoos, private collections, and circuses is a common occurrence and happens more often than most people realize. As someone with a lifelong passion for cryptozoology, I have become aware of the role that these “escapees” play in cryptid sightings. In a recent post, I wrote about an escaped sea lion that was behind a number of sea serpent reports in Lake Winnebago. I have also written about escaped kangaroos in the United States, some of which have never been recovered.
If the red panda is never found, and if it is able to survive for any length of time, I can’t help but wonder what kind of cryptid reports it will be responsible for in the future.