FILE PHOTO: Baboons preen each other at the Paris Zoological Park in the Bois de Vincennes in the east of Paris, France, October 23, 1995. Some fifty baboons escaped January 26, 2018 from their enclosure and most have been recaptured. Picture taken October 23, 1995. REUTERS/Mal Langsdon/File Photo

The Paris Zoological Park has been evacuated and closed for the day after 52 baboons escaped from their enclosure.

The zoo was quickly surrounded with armed police and marksmen carrying hypodermic guns when the baboons managed to break free and congregate around another area of the zoo.

A security perimeter was established around the zoo, in Vincennes, on the south-eastern outskirts of the French capital, to stop cars from driving in nearby roads and potentially colliding with one of the escapees.

According to reports, the baboons congregated around the Grand Rocher, the fake rock centrepiece of the zoo.

Three marksman with hypodermic guns attended the scene, but staff managed to round up most of the baboons, leaving just four unaccounted for as the hunt entered Friday evening.

It was reported that the public had not come in contact with the baboons and many were eventually captured "in a net", according to French police.

The Telegraph reported that the first that zookeepers' knew of the escaped primates was when they were spotted in a service corridor used by zoo staff.

"Since then they were returned to their enclosure barring four of them that have been spotted in this service area and are in the process of being caught," said the zoo in a statement.

Zoo staff and police battled to get all of the monkeys rounded up, with one policemen telling Le Parisien: "They can be dangerous. They must not get out of the park."

The zoo said in a statement that baboons could be unpredictable "especially when stressed" adding "They're stronger than us".

After the baboons had disappeared the zoo said that they may have ran to nearby play areas and other recreational facilities, although none have been reported to have left the park.

"They are almost certainly all in the park woods, but anybody in the area needs to keep a look out," a spokesman said.

Paris zoological park covers 36 acres and underwent a total overhaul between 2008 and 2014 .