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10A THE PALM BEACH POST WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 1999 FLOYD mm r i ('iiMiiiP iw Hill . T ' "'v ' ' ' A1 X r . J X ' V ' M A 1 ' ' ' N . V ' ' ' ' ' o - ... fJ v.- JENNIFER PODISStaff Photographer Hurricane Floyd didn't just change housing arrangements for the human beings who live in skittish and more secure in a small room rather than a cage, where they might hurt them-Florida. At the Brevard Zoo in Melbourne, flamingos and roseate spoonbills took up residence selves. By 2 p.m., the zoo had almost all of its animals in safe locations. Animal attractions Tuesday in the bathroom of the zoo's veterinary hospital. Zoo officials said the birds are very such as the Palm Beach Zoo at Dreher Park and Lion Country Safari took similar steps. unks for the binturong, and other tales Exotic creatures such as white rhinoceroses and wildebeest had to ride out the storm, too. Their human handlers had to see to it. By Tim O'Meilia Palm Beach Post Staff Writer The sheep didn't lie down with the lion, but the hawk hunkered down with the binturong in the gift shop of the Palm Beach Zoo at Dreher Park to weather the onslaught of Hurricane Floyd on Tuesday night. Meanwhile, lion Country Safari wildlife workers penned up the elephants and white rhinoceroses and pet owners fleeing the area packed animal shelters with their dogs and cats. Zoo workers took advantage of every building to find shelter for the more than 400 animals who live on the 23-acre property. The gift shop, its windows shuttered, became the home of birds of prey and several binturong, a catlike mammal with a long, hairy gets too bad," Volpe said. Both the zoo and the animal park may open today if the parks are not damaged. Many of the more than a dozen pet shelters were filled by Tuesday morning. "We have room for four or five more large dogs but that's it," said Karen Duchin, office manager at the Animal Hospital of the Palm Beaches, west of Lake Worth. The shelter held about 70 pets. "Some belong to people who have gone to shelters and some to people who have left the area," she said. Most other shelters were closed about noon Tuesday. The BocaDelray Animal Hospital was at near-capacity with 50 pets and the Palm Beach Gardens Animal Hospital had 25 animals. "We're only boarding those who have to evacuate. We didn't have enough room for everyone else," said office manager Cheryl Harrison, The dogs and cats were housed in pet runs and cages. prehensile tail. The toucans were in the visitors' restroom in crates, the doors boarded shut., The parrots were caged in the former night house of the jaguars and the flamingos were walking about, having the run of the place. Most of the smaller animals were crated or caged as zoo workers prepared for the storm. The zoo's big cats a pair of tigers, two ocelots and a Florida panther were locked in the cinder block shelters were they spend their nights on any other occasion. The large hoofed animals, along with the tortoises, alligators and kangaroos, were left in their pens but relatively unconfined. "If we confine them too much, they freak out. They do better if we give them access to find shelter themselves," said zoo education curator Laurie Smith. Zoo employees were also worried about some of the rare trees that zoo founder Paul Dreher planted decades ago. "We're all praying for the best," But they feared Floyd would cause flooding, to which the zoo is particularly susceptible. Once the animals were cared for, employees left. At Lion Country, 60 workers finished making preparations that began Monday for the attraction's 1,200 animals. The exotic birds and reptiles were housed in dog and cat crates. The 15 lions were put in their concrete block overnight shelters. Elephants and giraffes were herded into their overnight pens. But the 40 or so chimpanzees fended for themselves on the attraction's chimp islands. "It's impossible to herd those guys," said Lion Country spokesman Fred Volpe. The primates have concrete culverts 5 feet wide to hide in. Volpe said the animal park follows strict federal guidelines and industry standards in preparing for the storm. The hoofed animals, such as zebras, wildebeest, Asian water buffalo and various species of African antelope, were free to roam. "A lot of the herd animals will stay together with others of its species and lie down when the weather r ..... ? ' i FEW IN PORT FOR STORM Ships find safety away from land as storm nears FOOD AND SUPPLIES Residents who lumbered along found selves without lumber 1 1 , aft' " I T' 1 - - -a. ; $:iJ -"-4 , r Ait f ; " - - "4. . By Julie Waresh Palm Beach Post Staff Writer RIVIERA BEACH Ships fled the Port of Palm Beach Monday and Tuesday heading for a safer place to ride out the storm: the open sea. Barges went to the Gulf of Mexico, while the two gambling ships and several cargo vessels steamed south toward Key West or spots in the Caribbean. "A vessel is best at sea, avoiding the weather event," Deputy Port Director Martin Mets said. While it's standard practice to send all ships out ahead of a hurricane, two vessels remained at the port One is a 386-foot sugar barge, which is too slow to outrun the storm, Mets said. The other is a 175-foot cargo vessel with engine trouble. Both ships were tied down with heavy weather mooring systems, and each will have a full crew on board throughout the storm, Mets said. Tropical Shipping, the port's largest tenant, secured its local operation by mid-Tuesday and had sent ships out to sea from the Port of Palm Beach and from the Bahamas ports of Nassau and Freeport. "Theyll stay out on the water, hold their position and get out of the way of the storm," said Richard Calcote, Tropical's finance vice president. Tropical, which employs about 500 at the port and an additional 50 people in the Bahamas, has a five-person crew ready to fly to the islands following the storm. They'll assess the damage and reestablish communications so the company can get ships back to the Bahamas as soon as possible, Calcote said. "They are going to need relief supplies: water, building materials and so on," he said. By Stephanie Smith Palm Beach Post Staff Writer WEST PALM BEACH Procrastinating shoppers on Tuesday found themselves making do with particle board or whatever else they could find because hardware stores were out of plywood or were closed. Employees at Home Depot in North Palm Beach blocked the store's exit Tuesday morning as stubborn customers kept charging the opening, hoping to buy last-minute items. "We're sold out. I'm just trying to close up and get my employees home," said the store's manager, who gave only his first name, Kenny. At Scotty's in West Palm Beach, last-minute shoppers were clutching particle board and aluminum roofing straps at the checkout counters. A car pulled out of the parking lot with a wooden pallet poking out of the trunk. Scotty's manager Jay Roberts said the store sold about 4,000 sheets of plywood in the rush and had to limit customers to 10 sheets each before running out Tuesday morning. Ron and Ann Leonard of Riviera Beach were among the last Scotty's customers to buy plywood. They loaded four sheets into the back of a pickup while other empty-handed customers looked on in envy. "It was me. I procrastinated," Ron Leonard said. "My wife's been talking about it all week. I waited and waited. I wanted to see if it was really coming." But the problem won't happen again, he assured his wife. "When the season's over, I'm going to order some shuers," Leonard said. .... i r6 h - SHERMAN ZENTStaff Photographer People line up at Home Depot at Lantana and Jog roads waiting for plywood.