Lions and tigers break out of zoo cages in western Germany

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Several animals were freed from their cages by flooding at a western Germany zoo on Friday.

Local residents near the zoo close to the Luxembourg border were warned to stay indoors while the predators were on the loose.

A bear has been shot dead and officials are searching for two lions, two tigers and a jaguar that escaped from a German zoo, according to police.

A large search operation was carried out, involving the fire services, the police and veterinarians, the spokesman said.

Unconfirmed reports say the animals have now been captured after being found in the zoo's grounds with the help of a drone.

To add to the sense of alarm, it was reported that two lions, two tigers and a jaguar had also gone missing.

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Local authorities did not give further details of the recapture but a spokesperson told AFP news agency that the animals were "in their cages".

Friday's escape comes two years after two lions broke out of their cages at a zoo in Leipzig in eastern Germany.

The bear escaped from the 30-hectare (75-acre) zoo grounds and ran into the rolling hills of the Eifel region before it was shot.

One woman tweeted: "An innocent animal shot because the zoo clearly couldn't keep the animals safely in captivity".

Kruppert said the zoo was checking whether the animals could remain in their enclosures and that the zoo would take the animals to another zoo if the water damage was too great.

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