VISAKHAPATNAM: The Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in the city is all set to add more attractions for the visitors. A pair of Royal Bengal tigers is likely to be brought to the zoological park by next month.
A Bengal tiger and a tigress from Pilikula Biological Park in Karnataka and two lions from Gujarat zoo will be given to the Indira Zoological Park as part of the animal exchange programme. As of now, there are just two Bengal tigers in the zoo park and they are nearing their lifespan.
The zoo authorities are planning to breed Bengal tigers. Hence, they are getting male and female tigers. Vizag zoo is likely to exchange wild dogs for the animals they get from other zoos. Lions at the Animal Rescue Centre and zoo enclosure, will not survive for longer time. Hence, the zoo is getting two lions.
Meanwhile, the zoo officials have decided to drop the plan of getting zebras. “We earlier had the plan of getting zebras. But as per the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) guidelines, a zoological park should have only 10 per cent of exotic species in the total collection. We have more than the given per cent of exotic species, so we cannot get them now. It will take more time,” said Divisional Forest Officer Selvam.
Elephants in zoo park to be left unchained
The zoo got two new elephants Saraswathi and its calf Laxmi a few months ago, which had become a big attraction. Following the direction of the CZA to 64 zoos to move elephants to larger areas, the Vizag zoo had got some elephants.
Now, the authorities are planning for Protected Contact Method in the elephant enclosure to let them live unchained. Protected Contact Method for elephants is being followed in European countries where the elephants are kept unchained.
It will be implemented in Vizag zoo. As of now, 0.75 km walking track has been laid for the elephants. The jumbos can be left free to do anything without any restrictions in the enclosure. This method was successfully implemented in Bannerghatta National Park in Karnataka with 22 elephants. “The Protected Contact Method will soon be implemented in the zoo. The works are estimated to cost `50 lakh, the DFO told Express.