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Although none of the baboons reached any of the public areas, the evacuation was ordered as a precaution, the zoo said.

Baboons preen each other at the Paris Zoological Park in the Bois de Vincennes in the east of Paris, France, October 23, 1995. Within hours, 48 of the baboons had been returned to their enclosure.

Some 50 baboons reportedly escaped from their enclosure this morning, with the majority gathering around the Grand Rocher, a fake rock centerpiece in the middle of the zoo.

It is the second time that an escaped animal has caused a security alert in the French capital.

The animals did not come into with members of the public during their escapades, and are now in a section not accessible to visitors.

Speaking to The Parisien, a police source said: 'Our colleagues have them surrounded'.

The majority have now been recaptured, but four "large and potentially very aggressive baboons" remain on the loose. "They mustn't get out of the park", the officer added.

The trio were spotted in another part of the zoo, by the "Big rock", which, according to a map of the park, is close to where the Eurasian otters live.

Paris zoological park covers 36 acres and underwent a total overhaul between 2008 and 2014.