Red panda missing from Norfolk's Virginia Zoo

Red panda missing from Norfolk's Virginia Zoo

A female, 19-month-old red panda named Sunny reportedly went missing from a Virginia zoo Tuesday night and local police are helping zoo officials track her down, The Washington Post reported. Staff are now searching neighborhoods within a mile of the zoo and are asking residents to pitch in by scanning treetops or any other "climbable structure".

However, she was gone the following morning when zoo officials went to check on her. Zoo personnel began searching the grounds immediately for the run-away red panda.

Zoo officials were hopeful that Sunny was still somewhere on the grounds.

Staff reminds the public red pandas are generally not considered aggressive animals, but like any wild animal its behavior can be unpredictable.

The Virginia Zoo is pulling out all the stops to find Sunny, who's gotten global attention with her great escape.

Zoo staff discouraged people from trying to touch, feed or capture her on their own.

If you possibly spot Sunny, officials ask to call the zoo at 757-777-7899.

Red pandas are tree-dwelling animals with markings similar to a raccoon.

Sunny has lived at the zoo since arriving the Smithsonian's Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal in May 2016.