Indo-Asian News Service
New Delhi, May 14
It could well be the summer of content
for the denizens of Delhi Zoo.
The city may be wilting under a scorching
summer sun and few might be willing to brave the heat to visit
the zoo. But no effort is
being spared to make it a comfortable summer for the animals.
increasing the size of the enclosures and repairing water coolers
to ensuring that no new animals crowd the limited space,
are doing everything.
Work is under full swing to make the existing enclosures more natural
and bigger within the specified area of the zoo," Delhi zoo
director B.S. Bonal told IANS.
He said the expansion of enclosures
for bigger animals had already been carried out. This would soon
be done for the other animals
Some animals like the rhinoceros, white tiger, giraffes, deer and
lions have already been given enclosures that are quite natural.
Soon, it will be done for others also," he added, pointing out
that animals preferred natural surroundings, not cemented enclosures.
Birds and animals like to live in a natural environment. For that,
it is necessary to replicate conditions resembling their natural
habitat. More trees need to be planted along the enclosure and
wider space needs to be given to give them a homely jungle-like
Interestingly, to ensure the comfort
of the existing animals in the zoo, there are no plans to bring
in new species this year
visitors. Bonal said more animals would mean an increase in maintenance
costs and lesser space for existing animals.
We have geographical constraints. So our basic idea would be to
maintain the existing species of animals and keep them healthy
and happy," he
To make the summer bearable, coolers
were being repaired. Some enclosures are being covered with sheets
to save the animals
Of course, keeping the animals comfortable
and in good health isn't an easy task.
As the summer season kicks
off, one of the biggest challenges for the zoo would be the cleaning
and refilling of dry moats. Most
moats have hardly any water or are completely dry. And the one's
Bonal said defensively: "Algae formation is good
for feeding birds. But the top layer of algae is cleaned to keep
a check on hygienic
standards of water.
Moats in enclosures where animals don't require excessive water
are being kept dry as of now. They will be filled up when the
Elaborating, he said the purpose of
a zoological park was not to provide visitors with yet another
place but to spread
the message of conservation.
People should understand that a zoo is not a place for picnicking.
Earlier, people used to come here with their families, loaded with
food. They used to feed the animals and they left all the waste behind
Such activity dirtied the area. No eatables are allowed now," he
But the public doesn't learn quite
so easily. Despite the steps to contain the mess, plastic bottles,
glasses and cups continue
in the moats.
There is the added menace of visitors
We have deployed our staff who try to stop people from teasing
animals and throwing things in the enclosures. But we won't be
able to put
a complete stop if we do not get full support from visitors," Bonal
Spread across 176 acres, the Delhi
zoo is home to almost 1,270 animals of 136 different species. It
attracts almost 1.5