Mar 10, 2022
When Coalition Forces invaded Iraq in 2003, the security situation across the country and in major cities like Baghdad was grim. Amongst all the devastation of war, the situation for the Baghdad zoo animals was critical with starvation, dehydration, poaching, and shelling reducing the collection to a few dozen inhabitants. Along with his boss, South African Brendan Whittington-Jones, a game rancher turned captive animal rescuer, researcher and author, travelled to Baghdad with no money or institutional support, but a huge desire to help zoo animals in need. Brendan describes what is was like working for a year with minimal resources and on the "coat-tails" of the US military to save the remaining animals, and what lessons might apply to Ukrainian zoos trying to survive Russia's invasion and brutal war.