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4 Saving Animals of the Sieged City

Saving Animals of the Sieged City

Posted on September 9, 2013 by team


The Seige of Leningrad is one of the darkest pages in the history of the city. Severe winter 1941-42 finished what had been started by the merciless enemy. It was hard as hell for everyone, people were starving or freezing to death, it seemed nothing could help them.

But even in those terrible times some people didn’t spare themselves trying to save poor animals of the Leningrad Zoo.

Elephant Bettie in 1932.

How was it possible to rescue over 160 animals and birds in the city where enemy shells were exploding almost all the time, in the city with no electric power and no functioning sewage and water-supply, in the city with no food for those animals..?

The workers of the Zoo managed to take more than 80 rare animals away from the city to Kazan but many others remained in Leningrad.

Gates of the Zoo, 1920s.

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4 Responses to “Saving Animals of the Sieged City”

  1. Alex says:

    Interesting article, but one thing confused me…on first page theres a picture on Elephant “Bettie” with text “Elephant Bettie in 1943″ then on second page theres a picture on a dead elephant with text says “Elephant Bettie” got killed in September 10th, 1941.

  2. K@sey_yo says:

    Oh my god, this is AMAZING. As an animal-lover, and an amateur historian, I’ve perused through other instances where war-torn cities had to deal with their own exotic animals (some of them had to use them as emergency food, others struggled to care for them to the very end). It’s always amazing to see how these people loved their animals so much, and even tried to provide a childhood to kids back then. Great article, guys. Glad I stumbled on this.

  3. Osip says:

    Why not they simply slaughter and eat them? Resolve two problems at same time.

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