Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Japanese Zoo Drill - Escaped Rhino!

Japan is an extremely earthquake prone country, and a scenario where dangerous animals escape into downtown Tokyo isn't that far fetched (remember the confused Japanese macaque). Preparing for such an eventuality, staff at the Ueno Zoo hold regular drills to hone their pissed-off animal catching skills, and short of actually releasing rhinoceroses into the park the only way to do this is have people dress up like them.

Unrelated, but also interesting, from the Ueno Zoo's Wikipedia entry:

"Ueno Zoo's saddest time came during World War II. The Japanese Army ordered that all "wild and dangerous animals" at the zoo be killed, claiming that bombs could hit the zoo and escaping wild animals would wreak havoc in the streets of Tokyo. Requests by the staff at the zoo for a reprieve, or to evacuate the animals elsewhere, were refused. Ueno Zoo's three elephants at the time, John, Tonky, and Wanly (or Wang Lee) were too clever to eat the poisoned food, and thus were slowly starved to death. The fate of Ueno's animals, particularly the elephants, has often been used in Japan as an example of the evils of war."
There's also a scene in Haruki Murakami's The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle where Japanese soldiers in Nanking kill all the animals in a zoo, and I suspect Europe has similar stories. War sucks!


Alice said...

It was like a mini Ed Wood movie!
Not sure how effective those guys are going to be at wrangling an actual large and pissed rhino, though...

Aston said...

i like this video :)