The zoo was evacuated earlier this afternoon.
Paris baboon
Credit: Photo by Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images

A Paris zoo was evacuated Friday after 52 baboons escaped from their enclosure, sending waves of panic throughout the park.

The escape took place in the afternoon, and by 5 p.m. local time four baboons were still at large, according to the Parc Zoologique de Paris, where the animals escaped from. It is unclear how the baboons escaped.

At least 40 police officers and firefighters were dispatched with hypodermic guns, a police source confirmed to Le Parisien.

The park assured the public in a tweet that the baboons had not been in contact with any zoo-goers and that they are within sight of zoo-keepers.

"The animals never had access to the visitors' pathways. They never had any contact with the public," leadership from the zoo told local news outlets.

Built in 1934, the zoo is under the leadership of Paris' Museum of Natural History. It contains dozens of species, including snakes, jaguars, and of course, baboons.