Trail camera solves mystery of nightly zoo guest

trail camera
Dorit the porcupine in its enclosure at the Ramat Gan Safari in Israel. Photo is from the zoo’s Facebook page

A mysterious guest to the porcupine cage at the Ramat Gan Safari in Israel has been leaving behind evidence of its nightly visits, baffling zookeepers until they decided to set up a trail camera to solve the mystery.

At first, zookeepers at the Tel Aviv zoo thought maybe a worker was shirking his responsibility of cleaning out the cage of Dorit the porcupine by simply sweeping her droppings outside the cage rather than properly disposing of them.

This had been going on for weeks, according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

Finally, a trail camera was set up at night and it revealed that a wild male porcupine has been breaking into the zoo and meeting up with Dorit in what is clearly a prickly relationship.

Here’s footage of the wild porcupine outside Dorit’s cage:

Nobody knows where the wild porcupine goes after its nightly visits.

“If he’s hiding inside the Safari, he’s doing it very efficiently,” Sagit Horowitz, a Safari spokeswoman, told Haaretz.

Now, zookeepers are at a loss as to what to do.

Dorit was a tiny baby eight years ago when it was rescued by passersby after her mother was run over. It wouldn’t know how to survive in the wild, so releasing her is not an option.

Neither is capturing the wild porcupine and forcing it to live the rest of its life in the enclosure.

Until they figure out a solution, Dorit will enjoy the companionship, and zoo workers will have a little extra cleaning up to do.

h/t The Dodo

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