A real-life Jumanji is going down in the Georgian capital Tbilisi after devastating flash floods killed at least 12 people. As rescuers fight to airlift trapped people from their homes, zoo animals wander the streets. Most of the zoo’s enclosures were washed away, and the entire zoo turned into a “hellish whirlpool.” The Georgian Orthodox Church officials called the flooding “a punishment from God for melting down the monastery’s bells.” The zoo was funded (in part) by money raised from the bell melting, which somehow triggered the apocalypse.
Hundreds of animals roam the streets amidst the chaos. Search and rescue of these animals will take days, as 300 out of 600 animals remain missing. One bright spot in the chaos can be witnessed in “cute” hippos grazing along city sidewalks.
Cute, yes. But also a menace. Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili warned residents to avoid animals like this bear, who’s doing his best balancing act on a window air conditioning unit.
Special forces are hard at work in rescue efforts. In the case of hippos, tranquilzer darts do the trick. For public safety reasons, “some 20 wolves, eight lions, white tigers, tigers, jackals, jaguars have either been shot dead. Only three out of our 17 penguins were saved.” This hippo was peacefully recaptured with a tranquilizer dart.
This news report shows bears and a jaguar roaming the wreckage.