Las Vegas Sun

September 18, 2019

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USDA working to move animals out of Vegas zoo

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Leila Navidi

A sign points to various exhibits at the Southern Nevada Zoological-Botanical Park in Las Vegas.

U.S. Department of Agriculture officials say they're working with the director of a small Las Vegas zoo to move animals out of the facility so it can close down.

USDA spokeswoman Tanya Espinosa says inspectors visited the Southern Nevada Zoological-Botanical Park on Monday in response to an unspecified complaint. She says that's when owner Pat Dingle said he wanted to shut the park.

Espinosa says the USDA is working with national and local rescue groups to find homes for the animals. The park had four apes, 11 wallabies, several rodents and a puma at last count in June.

Calls to the zoo went unanswered Thursday.

Police say they cited Dingle for misdemeanor battery earlier this week after he apparently swung at a TV reporter who visited his home seeking comment.