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Great Escape? Penguin slips away from aquarium

Published On: Mar 06 2012 09:31:35 AM CST
Updated On: Mar 06 2012 12:36:13 PM CST
Penguins at Tokyo Sea Life Park

Toru Hanai/Reuters

Officials at the Tokyo Sea Life Park said they are on the hunt for one of their Humboldt penguins that escaped the aquarium and has made its way to a local river -- and possibly beyond.

The 2-foot tall flightless bird was one of 135 penguins at the park and is believed to have scaled a rock wall twice its size in its attempt to waddle toward freedom, the Japan Times reported.

According to the publication, the 1-year-old sharply dressed escapee was last seen floating around at the mouth of the Old Edogawa River in Tokyo, before it raced through some nets in an effort to catch it.

"Since then, we don't have any specific information about the penguin's whereabouts," Takashi Sugino, an official of Tokyo Sea Life Park, told the newspaper. "We apologize for causing trouble to local residents. Although the penguin will unlikely harm human beings, please contact our aquarium if you spot it, without trying to capture or chase it."

Humboldt penguins are native to the islands off western South America, and along the coasts of Peru and Chile, according to SeaWorld.org.

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