Alaqua Animal Refuge evacuates animals due to flooding

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FREEPORT, Fla. — Yesterday, Alaqua Animal Refuge made a swift and difficult decision to evacuate animals from the shelter due to massive rain, heavy wind, and widespread flooding from Hurricane Sally

Alaqua’s close proximity to the Choctawhatchee Bay and the safety of the animals were key factors in the decision, as the property is situated about 200 yards from the bay and is located in a high flood and evacuation zone.

On Wednesday, Alaqua was able to assess the massive flooding situation at Alaqua. Unfortunately, the Refuge is almost completely underwater, and is still receiving rain and high wind gusts. The flooding is varied with some areas 2-feet and other areas 3-feet or more. There is no access to the property from the road except by boat.

The good news is that all of the remaining animals are safe, officials wrote in a news release. This morning, Alaqua was able to move those mostly larger animals to higher ground away from the flooded areas. And reports that animals in foster care from yesterday’s evacuation are doing well.

“We are so looking forward to the day when we will not have to deal with weather events and flooding such as this,” said Alaqua Founder Laurie Hood. “It is one of the main reasons we have been trying to move from this location for many years. And luckily, our move to our future home is near and is even more critical as its location is high and dry and evacuations such as this will no longer be necessary.”

The most urgent thing Alaqua needs right now, officials wrote, is monetary donations to help continue to care for the animals, and begin cleanup efforts when the time presents itself. To donate, click here: http://bit.ly/AlaquaDonate

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