Video: Light and heat for the Kiev zoo

STORY: Tony can’t stand the cold – like most great apes. The problem: The 48-year-old gorilla lives in the zoo in Kyiv, a city that has been at war for about a year. Above all, the critical infrastructure of the Ukrainian capital has repeatedly come under massive Russian fire. And without energy there is no heat. Valentina Dykarova, Primate Specialist at Kyiv Zoo “If the electricity and the heating go out, we have to come up with a solution for our primates so that they don’t freeze to death. They need a temperature of at least 20 degrees Celsius. That’s why we have here in the primate department, set up a wood-burning stove where our gorilla Tony lives.” There are also battery-powered lamps, because when it gets too dark, great apes like Tony stop eating, Dykarova says. Thanks to donations from other zoos around the world, including Berlin, the Kiev zoo is able to provide its animals with light and heat despite the war. Trucks packed with relief supplies made their way east from the zoo in the federal capital on Friday. Within a year, Zoo und Tierpark Berlin was able to collect 400,000 euros in donations. Christiane Reiss, Spokeswoman Zoo und Tierpark Berlin “That’s a lot of money. We were very surprised how helpful the zoo friends in Berlin and the surrounding area are. And we are very happy that we can now get the money in the form of generators and can send fodder to Kyiv.” Not only the material emergency in Kyiv is oppressive for the helpers in Berlin. “While we’ve been exchanging ideas over the past few days about how big the delivery will be, what kind of truck is needed, the message came from Kyiv: Wait a minute, it’s possible that we won’t be able to communicate anymore because we are under fire. And of course that touches us a lot. It’s just something completely different when you write to someone who’s under fire. We can’t imagine something like that here.” The much-needed aid arrived in Kyiv on Tuesday after a logistical stopover in Poland. Just in time, says zoo director Kyrylo Trantin, because February is likely to be a tough month for them. He is very grateful for the delivery from Berlin. Kyrylo Trantin, Director of the Kyiv Zoo “We have to do everything we can to ensure that our animals don’t notice that there is a war going on outside their enclosures. We have no electricity between four and twelve hours a day. These generators will make our animals’ lives much better.” So far, Kyiv has experienced a relatively mild winter – by Ukrainian standards. Nevertheless, the temperatures here during the day are around the freezing point, at night it gets cold to minus ten degrees. Well, if you have a thick skin – or help from zoo friends.


source site-1