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VIDEO: Monkeys back in enclosures after Zoo raid

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Four of five monkeys stolen from Blackpool Zoo are safely back home after they were recovered in Yorkshire - but a three month old baby is still missing.

Two female cotton-top tamarins and two male emperor tamarins went missing from Blackpool Zoo when a gang cut a hole in a fence at the East Park Drive attraction.

All but the baby cotton-top were found in a cardboard box at a home in Bradford and have now been returned to the Zoo after their keeper picked them up.

Every port and airport in the country was on the lookout for the animals, worth thousands of pounds on the black market, after they went missing some time between the Zoo closing on Tuesday night and re-opening the following morning.

A spokeswoman for Blackpool Zoo said: “We are absolutely delighted to confirm that four of the stolen tamarins are safely back at the Zoo.

“Sadly, the baby was not found. They were recovered by police in Yorkshire and their keeper drove over to collect them.

“We should like to thank everyone involved with the media and social media for spreading the word so far and wide and to the police and Wildlife Crime Unit for all their hard work and support.”

Cotton-top tamarins are a critically endangered species with only 6,000 left in the wild.

The rare monkeys - which are believed to be worth thousands of pounds - were stolen by a gang of organised criminals last week.

Zoo bosses have said there would be a review after the thieves got inside by cutting through a wire fence on Woodside Drive, choosing a spot where trees meant they were obscured from view.

From there, they made their way straight to two enclosures, avoiding night-time security patrols, and unscrewed the locks from the doors to gain access.

 

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