(BIRMINGHAM, Ala.) — Authorities in Alabama are on the hunt for at least one gorilla after reports surfaced that the animal was spotted near a store in rural Newbern, Ala.
The Hale County Sheriff’s Office said the town’s volunteer fire department and police have been searching for the gorilla since the sighting was reported over the weekend, according to local affiliate ABC33/40.
Newbern is a town of around 220 people in Hale County, approximately 50 miles south of Tuscaloosa.
Authorities say they are not sure how many gorillas they are searching for.
One sighting was said to have been made by a child, while another person reported seeing what may have been a bear. The sightings have not been confirmed by home video or surveillance video, 33/40 reports.
The closest zoo to Newbern is located nearly 100 miles away in Birmingham, Ala. Officials at the Birmingham Zoo confirmed to ABC News on Monday that the zoo’s sole gorilla, 16-year-old Cenzoo, is present and accounted for.
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Pat Reavy, CNN
Matt Egan, CNN
Arwa Damon, Waffa Munayyer and Bryony Jones, CNN