Early reports from the regional broadcaster SWR suggested that lions and pumas had escaped, but officers later confirmed that the big cats were lions, tigers, and a jaguar. Residents of the German town Lunebach were asked to keep all doors and windows closed as local police rounded up the roaming animals.
The animals were believed to still be in the zoo's ground, but residents in the area, near the Luxemborg border, were advised to stay indoors.
Those living nearby have also been asked to report any sightings of the big cats, now loose in Western Germany. Part of a local motorway had also been blocked off due to high waters.
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"That enabled multiple animals to escape".
According to the zoo's website, it is owned by the Wallpott family and has three permanent employees.
This June 2016 image shows lion Malor (behind) and the mother Lira in their enclosure in the Eifel Zoo, eastern Germany.
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One of the lions was shot dead while the other was eventually brought back into captivity.
Authorities said a river running through the zoo complex had burst its banks, allowing the five cats and a bear to swim out of their enclosures.
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