Chimps, Lions Saved From Calif. Inferno

Volunteers help evacuate exotic animals from threatened Wildlife Waystation
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2009 3:59 AM CDT
Wildlife Waystation founder Martine Colette hugs a man who arrived with a trailer to help evacuate animals at the 160-acre facility in Angeles National Forest.   (AP Photo/Philip Scott Andrews)
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(Newser) – Volunteers leaped to the rescue yesterday as the gigantic Station fire approached a home for exotic animals north of Los Angeles. Rescuers drove trucks, horse trailers, and an 18-wheeler Budweiser truck to the Wildlife Waystation to help evacuate its tigers, lions, bears, ostriches and other animals to the Los Angeles Zoo and other locations, reports the Los Angeles Times.

"We're moving the animals as quickly as they can be moved. This is a slow process," said a spokesman for the LA Zoo. "Many of these big cats have never had to be handled before, so they're not used to this." Two chimps escaped while being unloaded at the zoo and were later recaptured.