Lincoln Park Zoo_2019

The eastern gateway of Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago on Oct. 10, 2019.

The animals are alright.

“All animals at Lincoln Park Zoo are accounted for and safe,” the north side Chicago zoo found it necessary to announce Monday.

“There were no break-ins, thefts, or incidents last night. Images circulating, claiming to be of Lincoln Park Zoo animals out of their habitats, are false.”

Social media posts amid the social unrest caused by protests and looting around the city and suburbs purported to show animals, including penguins and a hippo, on the loose.

There was significant skepticism about the images on sites including Facebook, but they are believed to have circulated widely, prompting the zoo to issue the extraordinary statement.

In addressing the topic, the zoo said it was responding to concerned messages it had received from “friends of wildlife.”

A spokeswoman for Brookfield Zoo, in the near western suburbs, said that institution had no issues either.

sajohnson@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @StevenKJohnson

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