The day Australia burned

From Wired UK, 21 April 2020:

Everything was chaos, but at least he wasn’t being hunted by a lion. Chad Staples comforted himself with that thought as he crammed pandas, marmosets and tamarins into his kitchen until his counters overflowed with animals. Outside his home, giraffes, rhinoceroses, zebras and ostriches fended for themselves in flaming paddocks. Tigers, gorillas, orangutans and lions paced in enclosures surrounded by electric fences, while the power teetered on the verge of cutting out altogether.

Everything was on fire. It was the last morning of 2019 but for the 300 residents of Mogo, a tiny town on Australia’s south-east coast, it could have been midnight already. At this time, on this day, the town should have been swarming with tourists, enjoying their summer holiday, stocking up on food and drink for the evening’s celebrations. Instead, thick black smoke from nearby bushfires had cloaked the town, and its zoo of more than 250 animals, in a premature darkness. Read more.

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