This Caribbean Island Was Evacuated After Irma. Now, the Pets Left Behind Are Going Feral

A fleet of hurricane-battered pickup trucks drives through a desolate, waterlogged street of the Caribbean island of Barbuda. Startled by the noise, dogs emerge from a roofless bungalow and begin to snarl as Zifforah ‘Ziffy’ Tyrell, 29, jumps out of a truck and throws a bucket-full of dog food at the aggressive-looking pack.

“Don’t shoot,” Tyrell says. In a second car, an army officer who is accompanying this rag-tag team of Barbudan animal activists and volunteers had raised his rifle. The soldier nods and Tyrell slowly moves back to the passenger seat of the truck, shouting: “Let’s get going, we have a lot more houses to get to.”

Apart from a dozen army officers, the island of Barbuda is now deserted. Its entire population of around 1,800 was evacuated to its sister island of Antigua days after Hurricane Irma laid waste to their homes, and hours before Hurricane Jose was predicted to make landfall on Sept 9. As aid groups focus on the humanitarian crisis on the bigger of the dual-island state of Antigua and Barbuda, trouble is brewing back on Barbuda.

The hasty exodus has left cats, dogs and herds of livestock bereft …read more

Source:: Time – Science

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