Missing Red Panda Returns to Smithsonian National Zoo

WASHINGTON (KTLA) – A red panda named Rusty that was reported missing from the Smithsonian National Zoo Monday has returned, according to zoo officials.

filephoto red panda rusty

Rusty (credit: Smithsonian National Zoo)

Rusty, who had last been seen around 6 p.m. Sunday, was located and sent back to the zoo just before noon Monday, according to an update on the zoo’s Twitter account.

It was unclear if Rusty had escaped or was taken from the zoo.

During the search, officials said red pandas are arboreal, territorial animals, so it was unlikely that Rusty would have wandered far from his exhibit.

Officials said Rusty was given a checkup upon his return to the zoo.

Click here for updates on the Smithsonian National Zoo Twitter page.