SAN DIEGO, CA—Citing “sagging first quarter profits” and disappointing 1995 revenue figures, the San Diego Zoo announced yesterday its decision to lay off nearly 2,000 animals, including all giraffes, vultures, elephants, snakes and a number of rare Siberian tigers. The creatures, many of whom have been with the zoo for over 30 years, have been released from their respective cages and pens, and are now free to roam the city in search of new homes, food sources and employment opportunities.

The Job Placement Center set up near the zoo's Jungle World exhibit has had no luck placing any of the animals that have come through looking for work. After a two-hour wait, this giraffe was told to brush up on her word processing skills and check back in two months.

“The decision to lay off all these fine, hard-working animals, who have contributed so much to this zoo over the years, was an extremely difficult one,” zoo CEO Jack T. Morgan announced at a shareholders’ meeting yesterday. “We are fully confident, however, that this downsizing will help bring a leaner, healthier San Diego Zoo into the 21st century.”

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