published Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Flash floods inundate North Georgia zoo

The worst flooding in the history of North Georgia Zoo & Farm inundates the property on Monday.
The worst flooding in the history of North Georgia Zoo & Farm inundates the property on Monday.
Photo by Contributed Photo /Chattanooga Times Free Press.
NORTH GEORGIA ZOO AND FARM

• Located in Cleveland, Ga.

• Featured on Discovery Channel (Dirty Jobs, Wild About Animals)

• Notable animals include alligators, zebras, camels, kangaroos, monkeys, buffalo

• Works with exotic animals and owners to find suitable placement

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This story is featured in today's TimesFreePress newscast.

The North Georgia Zoo and Farm near Cleveland, Ga., is recovering from flash floods that soaked the animal facility Monday afternoon.

Crews started with initial cleanup Monday, but a second wave of flash flooding halted the process.

"The good news is all animals are safe, and the ones that were in the worst areas were evacuated to dry ground," Director Hope Bennett said in a news release.

The zoo hopes to reopen as soon as this weekend, and the tricky part will be moving the zoo's 300 livestock and 40 breeds back to any semblance of "normal."

Large portions of the zoo's 30 acres are under water. Animal bridges and human walkways have been washed away, and tractors are waterlogged in standing pools.

The zoo announced a need for gravel and supply funding, as well as volunteers to assist in constructing replacement pathways.

North Georgia has seen a barrage of flash flood watches and warnings this month.

For more information, visit the zoo's website at www.myfavoritezoo.com.

Contact staff writer Jeff LaFave at jlafave@timesfree press.com or 423-757-6592.

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