Zookeepers at a zoo in one of Ukraine’s largest cities may be forced to euthanize its big cats, bears and other animals after a Russian attack nearly destroyed their habitats.
Zookeepers at Ecopark in Kharviv rushed to relocate all of its animals on Thursday after the zoo said it was “subjected to massive shelling and bombardment.” a statement by its founderAlexander Feldman.
“Ecopark doesn’t exist anymore,” he said,
“The biggest problem is large predators. Their enclosures miraculously still retain their integrity, but one more shelling – and the lions, tigers, bears, terrified with fear, could be free and move to Kharkov or the surrounding villages.”
“We can’t let that happen,” added Feldman.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Ecopark said staff successfully transported five lions and some other animals out of the zoo — despite another round of shelling. The day before, two more young lions were evacuated along with some jaguars and panthers.
“Transporting lions is not an easy task,” read a social media post.
“Especially when the animals have been stressed by the shelling for over a month and in general because their calm and measured lives have changed dramatically. But we made it, the main thing is that we left the fire zone safely and neither people nor animals were harmed.”
Zoo keepers noted that there are still “many animals in the Ecopark area.”
If a new home is not found for the remaining creatures, they must be euthanized.
“It’s unimaginably painful to talk about,” Feldman said, “but the top priority right now is people’s lives.”
https://www.twincities.com/2022/04/07/ukraine-zoo-may-be-forced-to-euthanize-animals-after-russian-shelling-if-they-cannot-be-relocated/ Ukraine zoo may be forced to euthanize animals after Russian shelling if they can’t be relocated – Twin Cities