Escaped Jaguar Goes On Killing Spree at Audubon Zoo in New Orleans

The jaguar was sedated and returned to its area zoo officials said

A jaguar escaped from its habitat and killed six animals at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans on Saturday, causing the zoo to shut down for the day.

Around 7:20 a.m., an adult male jaguar escaped its habitat, according to officials.

"The animal care team is devastated by this tragic loss", Audubon spokesman Frank Donze said in a news release. That was about an hour after he was first spotted roaming free early Saturday morning, before the zoo was open to the public.

In this photo taken August 17, 2011, a jaguar walks in a public zoo.

"We're looking at every possible cause", Kyle Burks, the zoo's vice-president and managing director, said.

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"In the history of Audubon, at least the last 50 years, we have not had any incident", said Ron Forman, head of the Audubon Nature Institute.

No people were injured, and the animal was secured in its night house, officials said.

Zoo officials are launching an investigation into what occurred.

No humans were injured in the incident.

In a Facebook post in February, the zoo called Valerio the jaguar a "big lovable goofball" and encouraged visitors to see him in its "Jaguar Jungle" exhibit. Our staff truly care about these animals, not just care for these animals. "We take this situation very seriously, and are working to investigate everything that happened so that we can prevent anything like this from happening again". Valerio is a "normal jaguar".

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