The Assam State Zoo Cum Botanical Garden has given good news to the visitors with the beginning of the New Year. The Assam Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya on January 2nd, 2020, said that one giraffe and two zebras will be brought to the zoo soon.
Earlier on November 30th, 2019, a female giraffe was brought to the zoo from Sanjay Gandhi Jaivik Udyan in Patna, as part of an exchange programme. The giraffe was brought after eight years to the zoo. The zoo had also acquired a pair of Asiatic Lions from the Sukkarbhag Zoo in Gujarat in August last year.
A total of 10,762 people visited the zoo, which is home to about 895 animals, birds and reptiles representing almost 113 species of animals and birds from around the world, on the first day of 2020. “Total revenue earned on January 1st, 2020 was 2,82,160,” the minister informed.
Moreover, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was also signed between the State Zoo and the Guwahati Refinery today. The refinery, which is the first public sector refinery in India, has handed over a check of Rs 31,29,395 to the zoo as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility activity. “The amount will be spent for the various developmental purpose of the zoo,” the minister said.
Meanwhile, keeping in view the safety of the animals, the zoo authority has placed heaters outside the enclosures of the tigers and lions to keep them warm during the winter. The authority has also placed paddy straw for deers and other animals.
The State Zoo, which is spread across 432 acre land, and Aaranyak, a leading wildlife NGO, have jointly achieved success by hatching a pair of Greater Adjutant Stork (Hargila) chicks on an artificial platform within the zoo enclosure for the first time. The minister congratulated the entire team for success.
This rarest of storks is evaluated identified as the endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The world population was estimated at less than 1,000 individuals in 2008.
In 1989, the breeding population in Assam was estimated at about 115 birds and between 1994 and 1996 the population in the Brahmaputra valley was considered to be about 600.
Photo: Smita Rani Deka