Zoo animals finally get clean water, spotless enclosures

Animals at Jijamata Udyaan in Byculla, who have been suffering in the scorching heat with little or filthy water and dirty, smelly enclosures, are finally feeling better. Authorities have cleaned their enclosures and made arrangements for clean drinking water. The authorities took up the issue after several inquiries were made and after MiD DAY’s report dated on May 26 (‘Dirty water, dusty enclosures plague Byculla Zoo’) exposing the poor conditions that the animals had to endure.

Animals were shifted into a temporary accommodation for the duration of the clean-up, during which enclosures for the crocodiles and hippopotamuses were filled with a minimum of 10,000 litres of fresh water. Earlier, animals in the zoo were left parched and thirsty as no water was provided to them and their enclosures emanated a foul odour. Pic/Bipin Kokate

According to the report, animals were not provided with enough clean water and the surroundings looked like they had not been cleaned for decades. The enclosed spaces emanated foul odour and the animals looked pale and hungry. Ten days after the report, zoo authorities took up the matter and cleaned the enclosures and provided the animals with some clean water.

MiD DAY’s report on May 26

Officials said that the cleaning process involved shifting the animals to a nearby temporary accommodation within the zoo, and draining the waters which were infested with algae. Enclosures of animals such as crocodiles and hippopotamus were filled with a minimum of 10,000 litres of fresh water. Speaking about the clean-up, Dr Sanjay Tripathi, senior veterinarian for the zoo animals, said, “Reptiles are usually fed every Tuesday, owing to which the water tends to get muggy. We clean the areas as much as possible.”

Work left to do
However, the uphill task of making the zoo less of an eyesore is far from complete. Construction material still lies unattended throughout the zoo and there is only one spot from which visitors can drink water. When this was pointed out to Dr Tripathi, he said, “We have a master plan for revamping the zoo. Once the plan takes shape, the conditions will improve. Until then, there is nothing much that we can do.”

Rs 150 cr
Amount set aside for the makeover of the zoo. The plans include a swanky restaurant with a glass wall separating guests from the cheetah enclosure, separate sections for different species

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