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Nandankanan Zoo launches adopt-an-animal scheme

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Young care-takers: Prakriti and Srishti at the launch of Adopt-an-Animal scheme of Nandankanan Zoo to receive their certificates as founder adopters in Bhubaneswar on Friday. —
Young care-takers: Prakriti and Srishti at the launch of Adopt-an-Animal scheme of Nandankanan Zoo to receive their certificates as founder adopters in Bhubaneswar on Friday. —

Staff Reporter

On-the-spot proposals to adopt animals and birds received

BHUBANESWAR: Seeking sincere participation from the general public for conservation of zoo animals, Nandankanan Zoological Park (NZP) went ahead with its ambitious adopt-an-animal scheme here on Friday.

Although zoo authorities came up with all preparedness to introduce six founder adopters to public, their effort got a boost when they received on-the-spot proposals of adopting more animal and birds from four individuals and organisations.

Funds received under the scheme would be utilised to support the zoo’s care and services for all inhabitants by providing quality food to meet their nutritional requirements, medical care, equipment, up-gradation of the enclosure and biodiversity enrichments.

The adopter (foster parent) would pay the amount fixed for each species he or she would like to adopt. No adopter would be allowed to take the animal home. All the adopted animals would remain in the care and custody of the zoo, and no ownership rights would be conferred

Ensured participation

Speaking on the occasion H. S. Chahar, the Principal Secretary to the Forest and Environment, said, “the programme would help not only in raising funds but also in ensuring participation of individuals, institutions, corporate bodies, NGOs and others for better management of zoo. Besides, the adoption of animals would certainly raise the awareness and commitment levels of people to respect value and conserve flora and fauna around.”

Chief Wildlife Warden B.K. Patnaik said the zoo needed Rs. 2 crore annually for feeding the animals. If that part was taken care partially by people, then more attention could be given to enriching of biodiversity and development of other infrastructure, Mr. Patnaik said.

Parents of two students Sristi and Prakriti from Cuttack were first to approach zoo authorities for adopting macaw (blue and yellow) by paying Rs. 4,000.

There were about five more individuals and organisations showed interest in the scheme. But at the launching ceremony, a government official, a school and two individuals adopted birds and animals.

In current scenario of rising costs, the resources available to the zoo were just enough to meet the essential expenses, said Zoo Director Ajit Patnaik.

The world famous San Diego Zoo received 20 per cent of its budget from entry fee, 40 per cent from corporate institutions and rest 40 per cent from donations, he said.

Among others Steel and Mine Secretary Ashok Dalwai was present at the occasion.


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