BBP shifting lions ahead of CZA inspection

The Bannerghatta Biological Park (BBP) is gearing up for the upcoming inspection by the Central Zoo Authority in the third week of December.

Last time, the CZA officials had objected to Park’s arrangement of having surplus safari lions housed along with the rescue centre lions. In view of this, the BBP staff were busy shifting the lions to separate enclosures on Wednesday.

Six safari lions were being sedated one by one and shifted to separate enclosures. Although these animals had to be transported to a short distance, it was quite a difficult task for BBP as each of these huge cats weighed not less than 200 kgs.

According to an official, shifting rescue centre lions are easier compared to a safari animal. The lions from the rescue centre are those rescued from circuses and they obey commands and easily enter the cages. But the staff members had a tough time shifting the safari animals which are wild in nature and comparatively healthy.

One such lion that tested the patience of the Park staff was Narasimha, much like his godly name, looked violent despite anaesthesia being administered. The staff had to wait for nearly two hours to shift the huge cat that kept roaring throughout. After waiting for an hour after sedating the cat, one of the animal keepers tried to see if he was unconscious, by opening the cage. Much to his surprise, the animal suddenly stood up.

Later, with the help of a rope tied to the animal’s stomach, it was dragged into a cage.
The Park officials say that the population of lions have increased in safari as they have not restricted them from breeding. Some of these big cats were to be shifted to the Lucknow Zoo, but due to the delayed paper work, transporting them has been deferred. Lack of space inside the safari and the rescue centre is one of the main reasons why BBP is not allowing breeding among the leopards.

The other reason is that unlike the tigers or the lions, leopards are notorious ones that can climb fences, trees and easily escape. The Park had to make special enclosures for these leopards in order to confine them to their enclosures. The park houses 24 leopards.

Tigress dead

A 17-year-old tigress, Yashoda, a safari animal, died at the Bannerghatta Biological Park due to old age illness. Yashoda was born at BBP in January 1996. The tigress was suffering from old age illness for the past one month and had also undergone a surgery.

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