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Last Updated: Tuesday, 1 November 2005, 12:53 GMT
Red panda missing from city park
Birmingham's red panda
The pandas were brought in from Bristol Zoo in March this year
One of Birmingham's red pandas has escaped from a nature centre.

Keepers at the reserve in Cannon Hill Park realised the male panda, one of a pair, was missing on Sunday morning.

A spokesman said they were puzzled as to how he escaped as new security measures had just been put in place to secure his pen.

Senior keeper Les Basford said anyone who sees him should not approach him but contact the park. He added the panda's brother was pining for him.

He said the creatures were placid and normally showed no desire to escape until last week when a second panda escaped.

He was quickly retrieved and security at the pen updated.

Mr Basford said: "We have been searching for two days and now we would ask anyone who lives near the nature centre to check their trees, gardens and sheds."

Red pandas are similar to racoons and tend to live high up in trees, feeding on bamboo.

At this time of year they should be able to survive on fruit and berries.

They are a rare breed and there are only 70 in the country.

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