Authorities says three tigers that had escaped from a Mexican circus truck were recaptured after police distracted them by throwing them chickens.

The local newspaper Cambio de Michoacan says the escaped felines holed up in house in the western city of Zitacuaro. When the tigers started breaking down the home's fence, police lobbed them chickens to eat until a dogcatcher and the animals' trainer arrived.

An officer at the state police office in Zitacuaro says the tigers were loose for less than an hour. The officer was not authorized to be quoted by name.

The big cats were recaptured Wednesday and taken to a local police station where they were held until their owner agreed to pay for the chickens and damage to the fence.