Nivedita Ganguly

VISAKHAPATNAM: While people are desperately waiting for the monsoon showers, for the avian friends of Indira Gandhi Zoological Park monsoon is the most dreaded period. As the clouds to descend upon the quiet precincts of the zoo providing much relief to the other restless inmates, the arrival of the rains signifies a struggle for survival for the birds.

Smaller birds like parakeets, cockatoo, lovebirds and exotic species like macaw are a vulnerable lot during the monsoon as they are more susceptible to diseases like pneumonia and other viral diseases.

“Maximum number of deaths occur during the monsoons. Especially if the bird is old, the resistance level decreases leading to death on many occasions. Though aquatic birds do not face any such troubles, the terrestrial birds need special care,” zoo curator Rahul Pandey said. Like last year, even the repeated efforts of the doctors and zoo officials could not save a female white cockatoo that died after it contracted a viral disease. To prevent such recurrence of diseases among the avian bandits, the zoo authorities have geared up with several precautionary measures to ensure that the birds remain unaffected during the monsoon. “An antibiotic dose has been administered to them after the first monsoon shower. It’s a five-day course that is mixed with water and given to the birds. After a gap of two and a half months, a second course will be given,” he said. Meanwhile for the other inmates, especially the aged crowd of the zoo, this is the season for them to rejoice after a tough blistering summer.