The outbreak of the Second World War forced Jan Żabiński to make a number of dramatic decisions. Due to the risk of being set free by the bombings to roam the streets and pose threat to local population, the predators were shot dead by the ZOO employees. Other animals were slaughtered in order to provide food for residents of Warsaw and the army during the siege. The animals who remained alive were taken away by the Germans. Tuzinka the elephant was transferred to the ZOO in Königsberg. A number of animals were shot by German officers during an impromptu hunt they organized at the ZOO. “There was this gloomy, dead calm everywhere, and I kept telling myself that it is not the dream of death and extinction, but merely ‘winter sleep’”, wrote Antonina Żabińska