BBP to get Zebras, giraffes from South Africa soon

BBP to get Zebras, giraffes from  South Africa soon

The Bannerghatta Biological Park (BBP) will be the new home for several animals due to arrive from South Africa soon. 

The acquisitions are part of the BBP’s plans to procure four zebras, a pair of giraffes — and if donors are available, a pair of chimpanzees. 

According to Range Gowda, Executive Director, BBP, it will take at least a month for the animals to arrive. “The animals are being procured through Coimbatore-based donors who will bear the costs of acquiring the animals. BBP will have to only pay handling charges and ensure that the animals are transported safely to the park,” he added.

Gowda said that even after the animals arrive, it will take another month for them to be moved into their enclosures. “The animals will have to be initially quarantined to ensure that they are stable and adjust to local weather,” he said and added that they will come from one of the many wildlife breeding farms in South Africa. 

Sources, however, said that while the existing donors are willing to pay procurement expenses for the zebras and giraffes, they are, however, unwilling to pay for chimpanzees, which may cost as much as Rs 35 lakh.

Other arrivals

The park will also procure five nilgais from Gadag district, as the park had lost eight such animals to foot and mouth disease a few months ago. The park has also welcomed two wild dogs (a male and a female), which accidentally arrived during an animal exchange programme. 

According to Gowda, the wild dogs were originally headed for Andhra Pradesh from the Mysore Zoo when the female wild dog fell seriously ill during the course of the journey. The animals were diverted to the BBP where they were treated for illness. The park has now decided to keep the animals at the zoo. 

The BBP lost its only zebra after it developed bacterial infection in October. Plans to find a companion for the animal were derailed when the animal died. BBP also had plans to bring giraffes from Mysore Zoo, but the plan was deferred after the onset of foot and mouth disease, which killed nearly 28 herbivores at the park.

Blue crowned pigeons are the park’s latest attraction. Two pairs of blue crowned pigeons arrived from Indonesia a week ago at the BBP after an NRI sponsored them.
 However, handling charges were borne by the Bannerghatta Biological Park management. 

Officials say that there are many people living abroad who want to sponsor animals and birds to zoos in India but are not aware about the procedure.

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