Wild Animals Now Roaming City Streets | The Institute for Creation Research
Wild Animals Now Roaming City Streets
When in houses humans stay, wild critters come out to play! It seems that coronavirus has beckoned wild critters to come boldly into human habitations that appear deserted due to mandated shelter-in-place shutdowns.

Can you imagine a bustling, busy city, full of streets and buildings, depopulated of people, then repopulated by wild dogs and reptiles? Would that sight leave you wide-eyed and whopper-jawed?

Such concepts, for many, appeared hard to imagine, but—thanks to COVID-19 response shutdowns—not anymore! While local human residents are shut-in, wild animals are now roaming many urban streets and sidewalks and prowling around suburban neighborhoods.

Consider these examples, when wild animals abandon their natural fear of humans1 and take to the streets.

Wild canines, boldly intruding into city streets and suburban neighborhoods, include coyotes in San Francisco, California.2,3 Some coyotes are enjoying time on the Golden Gate Bridge.3

Likewise, wild reptiles confidently saunter about in human communities, including beach-faring alligators in South Carolina.2

Other wild mammals visiting urban and suburban shutdown-sheltered districts include wild deer in Nara, Japan,3,4 and in London, England;2,4 pumas in Santiago, Chile;2,3,4 lions lying in the roadway—napping—in South Africa;5 wild boar in Bergamo, Italy,3,4 in Haifa, Israel,4 and in Barcelona, Spain;2 monkey jamborees in the streets of Lopburi, Thailand;2 Kashmiri mountain goats in Llandudno, Wales;2,3,4 mountain goats in Paris, France,4 and more.3

Maybe some of the Israelis in Haifa—as they try to dodge wild boar in streets and alleys—will recall that the Hebrew Bible predicted times when wild animals would roam cities in turmoil.

The Old Testament reports prophecies involving civilizations that incur God’s judgment, with once-populated cities being destroyed to the point of depopulation—or, more accurately, the human populations of those punished cities are to be replaced by wild animals.

Isaiah predicted that Babylon would be destroyed and repopulated by wild beasts, such as wild canines and wild reptiles.6 Such prophecies are easier to imagine nowadays.

Meanwhile, when in houses humans stay, wild critters come out to play.7

References
1. Genesis 9:2.
2. Staff Writer. 2020. Coronavirus: Animals Takeover Cities during Self-isolation. BBC Newsround. Posted on bbc.co.uk April 11, 2020, accessed April 21, 2020.
3. Colarossi, N. 2020. Photos Show Wild Animals Roaming Empty Streets as Coronavirus Lockdowns Keep Humans Inside. Insider. Posted on insider.com April 2, 2020, accessed April 21, 2020.
4. Ciaccia, C. 2020. Wild Animals have Taken Over the Streets in Major Cities Because of the Coronavirus Pandemic. Fox News. Posted on foxnews.com April 3, 2020, accessed April 21, 2020. See also Williams, D. 2020. Beware the Boar: Wild Pigs Patrol Israeli City under Coronavirus Closure. Reuters. Posted on www.reuters.com April 17, 2020, accessed April 21, 2020.
5. Rogers, J. 2020. Lions Spotted Napping on Road during Coronavirus Lockdown. Fox News. Posted on foxnews.com April 17, 2020, accessed April 21, 2020.
6. Isaiah 13:21-22 refers to wild canines because the Hebrew nouns ’ōchîm and ’îyyîm indicate hyenas and jackals. The Hebrew noun tannîm is usually translated “dragons” (i.e., reptiles like lizards and snakes). Isaiah 34:11 prophesies wild beasts overrunning Edom. Similarly, Zephaniah 2:13-14 foretells wild beasts overrunning Nineveh. See also Cansdale, G. S. 1976. All the Animals of the Bible Lands, Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 124, 134, 137, 175, 252-253, 263-265.
7. Of course, as Patrick Barkham indicates, urban and suburban places have been occasionally visited by wild animals (before COVID-19 shutdowns) as once-wild habitats are deforested, or otherwise destroyed, for modern development of residential neighborhoods and/or industrialized districts. Barkham, P. 2017. Urban Beasts: How Wild Animals have Moved into Cities. The Guardian. Posted on theguardian May 20, 2017, accessed April 21, 2020. Brakham reports: “Rome has a problem with wild boar; wolves mingle with suburban Germans; mountain lions frequent LA. All around the world, city life seems increasingly conducive to wildlife . . . Urban ecology may be a burgeoning new discipline, but wild animals have always lived in cities. Birds and mammals ranged through the cities of ancient Egypt. These days, post-industrial landscapes are particularly hospitable to wildlife. The wolves that returned to Germany at the turn of the century first made their homes in former military zones still emptied of people, or in open-cast mining sites. Finnish hunters complain that resurgent wolves enjoy space and peace in the border zone with Russia. The demilitarised zone between North and South Korea is similarly rich in wildlife.”

*Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.
The Latest
NEWS
Seafloor Spreading Matches Creation Predictions
Evolutionary scientists recently determined that seafloor spreading has been slowing down.1 And they are not exactly sure of the reason. However,...

NEWS
Remembering Patti Morse
But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from...

CREATION PODCAST
What Happened with Washington's Violent Volcano? | The Creation...
How did a 1980 volcanic eruption change our understanding of geology? What impact did this event have on the age assignments of sediments? Join us for...

NEWS
Fossil Insect Predation Shows No Evidence of Evolution
Some recent science news stories have come out describing fossils of insects feeding on plants supposedly many “millions of years ago.” What...

NEWS
Adaptive Genetic and Epigenetic Changes in Plants
Being sedentary organisms, plants are essentially stuck where they are planted and need to dynamically adapt to the conditions around them to not only...

NEWS
Dr. Tim Clarey Awarded Adjunct Professor of the Year
Congratulations to ICR Research Scientist and geologist Dr. Tim Clarey! He received the Adjunct Professor of the Year award from King’s University,...

NEWS
Mars Rover Records Dramatic Solar Eclipse
NASA’s Mars Perseverance rover has filmed the Martian satellite (or moon) Phobos eclipsing the sun, and this short but impressive video may be viewed...

CREATION PODCAST
Darwin or Design? CET Pt. 2 | The Creation Podcast: Episode 22
How does design provide a better explanation for biological functions and adaptations than natural selection? And how can engineering principles help...

NEWS
Resurrecting “Ancient” Enzymes?
The most abundant protein on Earth is probably an enzyme (biological catalyst) called RuBisCO (or Rubisco) designed by the Creator to function in photosynthesis.1...

NEWS
Inside May-June 2022 Acts & Facts
How can Christians stand up to scientific elitism? What does the plant fossil record in Iceland tell us about the global Flood? Does a new bacterium...