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SOS Rhino : In the News : ZOO RHINOS LONGING FOR MATES!
 

ZOO RHINOS LONGING FOR MATES!

  Star of Mysore Online
www.starofmysore.com

Thursday, June 9, 2005

Mysore, June 9 (KMC)- What's life worth without a mate? It is natural for a heart to crave for the love and company of a mate of opposite sex. This holds good for all fauna. A mate may fulfill the physical requirements, but more vital is the mental satisfaction each species derives from its mate.

Therefore, the Mysore Zoo authorities are willing to spend any amount of money to provide suitable mates for Bhima, aged 36 and Priya, aged 10, both two-horned rhinos of African origin.

So, why not try an intercaste marriage between the two animals, one might ask? The reason is, they are of different species and genera -- Bhima, a white rhino, belongs to Perato therium simum species while Priya, Blark rhino, belongs to Diceros bicornis species. Because of this, nature itself does not permit their mating.

Bhima's mate Hidimbi, died three years ago, after falling ill. He seems to be very depressed since then.

He was brought here from a Zoo in Southern part of Germany in 1971 when he was two years old.

Priya was born in Mysore Zoo, to her parents Rajendra and Prema. She too had a mate till last year, when he died due to a malady.

The average life span of an African Rhino is 40 to 45 years. It means that Bhima is nearing his old age, while Priya is blooming into youth.

She playfully runs around in her moated enclosure of lush green grass, enjoying her food given by the Zoo-keepers. However, Bhima, either due to his age factor, or craving for his mate, half-heartedly finishes its meal and faces minor digestive problems.

The Zoo authorities are keen to spend money to import mates for the two animals; but the hitch lies in the rules and regulations imposed by the Government in transporting the animals outside the country's border, said Zoo Executive Director Manoj Kumar.

Rhinos of the same genera are available at a Zoo in Korea. But they are not ready to sell the animals. However, they are willing to exchange them for other animals. This is a common trend in all the Zoos in the world -- they prefer exchange of animals, birds or reptiles rather than sell them.

The Korean Zoo people like to have elephants in exchange for the rhinos that Mysore Zoo has asked. However, owing to the stringent norms imposed on the transport of animals overseas, it has been a major hurdle.

Besides, rhinos of the same species are nowhere in the rest of India.

If only the organisations for animals took some interest in this regard, the rhinos would be grateful to mankind.



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