Although no animals were injured, the February ice storm left uprooted trees, dropped limbs, debris, and extensive damage to the animals’ outdoor habitats.
After being forced to close its doors for a week, the Austin Zoo’s executive director, Patti Clark, called the Zoological Disaster Response, Rescue, and Recovery for assistance, a news release said.
“They have cleared four of our worst-hit habitats in a matter of seven hours,” said Clark. “It’s absolutely amazing! Their crew is twice the size of our facilities department. It would have taken us weeks to accomplish what they’ve been able to do in one day,” said Clark.
The Zoological Disaster Response, Rescue, and Recovery was created to help zoos and aquariums recover after natural disasters.
After “After Hurricane Harvey—a natural disaster where San Antonio Zoo led rescue work at Houston Downtown Aquarium and Texas Zoo in Victoria—ZDR3 was formed. It has since become a national asset for zoos and aquariums,” said Tim Morrow, President & CEO of San Antonio Zoo.
Through ZDR3, the San Antonio Zoo sent a six-person team to help with recovery efforts.
“We are very proud to say that San Antonio Zoo has responded multiple times in Texas, Florida, and Louisiana in recent years to lend our services and assistance as part of this network,” said Morrow.
More information on the San Antonio Zoo’s conservation efforts and initiates can be found online.