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Nagaland

Animal rescue centre need of the hour at Nagaland Zoological Park

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By EMN Updated: Sep 21, 2019 11:38 pm
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A tiger inside the Nagaland Zoological Park in Dimapur. (EM Images)

Eastern Mirror Desk

Dimapur, Sep. 21: The Nagaland Zoological Park (NZP) in Dimapur, is in essence, one way of experiencing the myriad flora and fauna the state is proud to boast about. Many might oppose the idea of animals being held captive in the scorching heat of Dimapur. But one cannot deny that some species would also have the best chance of survival in zoos, especially against poachers and weather conditions of this region.

Eastern Mirror met with the director of the NZP, Prabhat Kumar and he shared the many challenges faced, and the facilities required at the NZP to care for the animals as well as to let visitors experience something different from the usual hustle and bustle of the city life.

The NZP, he said, is no longer what it was a decade ago; now it has been equipped with proper amenities and facilities. According to the administrative report of the Forest department (2018-19), the zoo was established in 2008 with a population of 50 captive animals; this has now grown to 333.

Kumar said that an animal rescue centre was necessary at the zoo, for which a proposal has been sent to the government of India. “If the Centre approves, then we will start constructing it which might take eight to nine months,” he said.

Kumar also revealed that many complaints arise because the public expect the department and the zoo officials to give shelter and rehabilitation the moment rescued animals arrive. He said this was not possible as they cannot club them all together inside an enclosure.

“In times like that, we need to shift some to the rescue centre so that new enclosures can be made at the earliest,” he said.

Another ‘basic need’ of the zoo he said, is a permanent veterinary facility with a doctor. It was revealed that the zoo never had a permanent veterinarian, and the one currently deployed is on honorarium basis. The director informed that he has requested the senior officials to raise the honorarium or create a permanent post altogether.

A Himalayan bear inside the Nagaland Zoological Park in Dimapur. (EM Images)

“There will always be issues with the zoo since we are an upcoming zoo but we are trying our best to change it for the better and make the experience a memorable one for the visitors,” Kumar said.

A cold storage facility is also needed since all food items are perishable, while some like meat needs to be kept in a refrigerator, he said.

The director also mentioned that all animals are fed at certain timings and the bigger carnivorous animals are fed in cells, which are not visible to the public; hence causing confusion whether they are fed well.

He also stated that bringing white tigers were also on the pipeline along with other new animals but only after completion of necessary paper works.

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By EMN Updated: Sep 21, 2019 11:38:02 pm