Forest and Environment Minister Bijayshree Routray on Sunday unveiled three new enclosures at Nandankanan Zoological Park to mark its 54th Foundation Day.
The Indian hare, amphibian and marmoset enclosures were constructed with funds from the zoo society’s earnings.
The foundation day function was attended by Secretary RK Sharma, acting Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) BP Singh and Director of the Zoo Sudarshan Panda.
The amphibian enclosure at Nandankanan is the first of its kind in a large zoo in India. Although Darjeeling Zoo has one, it has just a box set-up with one species whereas Nandankanan boasts of six different species.
Interestingly, of 27 amphibian species seen in Odisha, the zoo has 20 of them. To mark the occasion, a book on “Amphibians of Nandankanan” was also released.
The three enclosures, Panda said, will add to the animal park’s attraction which recorded over 40,000 visitors on the day. Nandankanan earned close to `6.45 crore during 2012-13 which was also the busiest year in the Zoo history, witnessing a quantum jump in annual visitors. The total number of visitors touched a record 29,05,303 during the calendar year.
The guests also gave away prizes to 14 best zoo staff and two of the best guides. Deputy Director Manoj Nayyar was also present on the occasion.