El Paso Zoo Official Comments on Viral Photo of Kids in Animal Enclosure
It has happened again at the El Paso Zoo; guests disregarded the safety measures in place and entered an animal enclosure. The incident happened on Wednesday (10/12).
A photo shared on social media and posted below shows two kids climbing on a boulder that is part of the sun bear enclosure. According to the Instagram account FitFam El Paso, which posted the photo of the incident, “minors [entered] the sun bear enclosure…while the animals were feet away.”
However, El Paso Zoo Director Joe Montisano told a local news station the rock wall the kids were climbing is adjacent to the exhibit and not in the actual enclosure. He added that the children were never close enough to the bear to be in any real danger.
Comments on social media ranged from “I swear some people don’t deserve to be parents,” to “this is why we can't have nice things,” to “I blame hot Cheeto girl.”
The last one is a reference to the woman who climbed into the spider monkey enclosure in May of 2021 and was filmed feeding them Cheetos.
The story was picked up by all the major networks and print media and even went international. Although the zoo did pursue charges against her, a year later the case is still under investigation and Monkey Girl, I mean Luz Elizabeth Rae remains unrepentant.
Her actions led to modifications on the fence surrounding the Spider monkey exhibit. The zoo director says this latest breach will likely result in a fortification of the sun bear enclosure as well.