As the Creek Fire scorched over 12,000 acres through Angeles National Forest near Sylmar, more than 150,000 people were evacuated from their homes, 30 structures were destroyed and exotic animals were transported to safer areas since the Wildlife Waystation was in the path of the unforgiving blaze.
The Wildlife Waystation, which is a 160-acre animal sanctuary, houses over 400 wild animals that range from lions and tigers and bears (oh, my). The animal sanctuary is also home to eagles, alligators and chimpanzees.
Firefighters battled the nearby blaze while staff and volunteers worked diligently to board animals to safety before the flames could reach them.
A Waystation spokesman said Thursday that the animal sanctuary was safe and many of the 400 plus animal residents were set to return. While fire did make it onto the grounds, none of the animals were harmed or burned and all of the primary structures were saved.
The Creek Fire was first reported at 3:42 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017 and threatened 2,500 structures. No deaths associated with the fire were reported.