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Panic! At the Zoo

Pro-Morsi rallies in Giza are said to have spooked the animals at the zoo with their lighting equipment.

Since June 30th, pro-Morsi and Muslim Brotherhood rallies have congregated at El Nahda Square, where the Giza Zoo's main entrance lays. Aside from the occassional violence, the occupation of the area by the often-raucous protestors, as well as army tanks and soldiers, has not only brought traffic to a standstill over the last few weeks, but is said to have rattled up the poor animals at the zoo. This is due to the floodlights protestors have installed in the area to help keep the area brightly-lit for camera crews to see that they really mean business. The bright, unnatural lights are said to be confusing the animals as to what time of day it is. “The park has a lot of tigers, lions and zebras who, until recently, had only seen the sun rise and set, and used that for orientation. We don’t have any artificial lighting; everything here is as close as possible to the natural environment. But now these protestors are lighting up the park at night... The animals are panicking,” the zoo official was quoted as saying.

The situation has forced zookeepers to work overtime to care for the animals whose biological clocks are confused, keeping them up all night long. "The animals are suffering. The people in the square are not heeding our calls; we have asked the authorities to put an end to this," added the zoo official.