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Fake Zebra Escape Drill: Japan's Tama Zoo Runs Exercise To Prepare For Escaped Animals (VIDEO)

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A Japanese zoo put one of their staff members in a zebra costume for a drill.
A Japanese zoo put one of their staff members in a zebra costume for a drill.

What happens if a zebra escapes from your zoo? The staff at Tokyo's Tama Zoo are totally prepared for this eventuality.

Staff members from the zoo ran a drill that involved nets, tranquilizer guns, dozens of staff members and one unfortunate soul dressed up in a man-sized zebra costume. The Times of London reports that the drill is an annual event and part of an earthquake drill.

"If something major actually happens, then of course there's the real animals.

"But there is a performance aspect to this, in that it's also to increase staff's awareness. If something were to actually escape then of course that would be very bad," zoo director Naoki Tabata told ITN news.

The simulation was quite thorough. In it, the zebra 'hurts' a zookeeper, can be seen acting agitated and then finally gets 'tranquilized' and is subdued by zoo staff.

Yosuke Tanaka, a new staff member at the zoo and the zebra re-enactor, did mention one unfortunate aspect of his role.

"I'd have to warn them that the inside does indeed become a bit stinky with sweat and so they should think about how to deal with that," he told the Guardian.

While this zebra might be fake. We can assure that these adorable baby animals are very, very real:

Zoo Babies 2012
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