Animal rescue efforts continue around newly-built dam

Animal rescue efforts continue around newly-built dam

Animal rescue efforts continue around newly-built dam

With buildings in the Yusufeli region in the northeastern province of Artvin submerging in the waters of the newly-built dam, volunteers from all across Türkiye are coming in scores to help save the animals trapped in these buildings.

The water levels continue to rise in Yusufeli, Türkiye’s highest dam, where water retention processes started on Nov. 22 last year.

The dam waters surround the abandoned buildings, streets and bridges. The old settlement is now completely cut off from the land, while efforts are ongoing to rescue many animals trapped in these abandoned buildings.

Volunteers, accompanied by canoe and rafting athletes, rescued nearly 20 animals, including cats and dogs that had just given birth and even baby snakes, by accessing hard-to-reach spots with boats.

In the region where aquatic animals, which find it extremely difficult to survive in the dam water, were also rescued and are being treated, controlled and fed by volunteer veterinarians.

Mehmet Tığoğlu, the president of Nazilli Animal Rights and Nature Protection Association, stated they came from the quake-hit southern province of Hatay after conducting search and rescue works in the rubble.

Unfortunately, many animals are stranded around the old settlement, especially cats, which are the most disadvantaged group, Tığoğlu stated.

“All animals need our help. Volunteers and veterinarians who have received professional animal search and rescue training from various regions of the country are here to save all living creatures in this region,” he said.

Saygın Dönmez, another volunteer at HAYTAP Animal Rights Federation, stated that they had been in the quake-hit region for two months and that they quickly traveled to Artvin with a six-person team after they received information about animals trapped around the dam.

Thanking the rescue teams for their strenuous efforts, local shopkeeper Yaşar Koçoğlu recalled that they used to hear the cries of cats and dogs coming from inside the buildings.

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