Animal exchange programme, rather than purchase, is planned for zoos in Kerala, says Minister

Minister for Zoos and Dairy Development J. Chinchurani inaugurating the new projects at the city zoo.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Instead of spending money to buy animals, a project to exchange animals that are in excess numbers in the State zoos for those lacking them is being planned, Minister for Zoos and Dairy Development J. Chinchurani has said.

She was speaking after inaugurating four new projects — an office-cum-store complex, butterfly garden, exotic bird enclosure and a mobile app — at the capital city zoo here on Wednesday. The projects were inaugurated as part of the 100-day action plan of the State government.

The Minister said the public have been waiting for the city zoo and the museum to reopen. With the COVID-19 situation not as grave, both the museum and the zoo could reopen soon. Safety of the zoo employees would be ensured.

The office-cum-store would help officials and employees, particularly women, work in a comfortable environment. While the butterfly park would be of benefit to students, the mobile app would provide necessary information to those unable to visit the zoo in the current pandemic situation, said Ms. Chinchurani.

Staff honoured

She also honoured zoo employees for their exemplary work. V.K. Prasanth, MLA, presided over the function, while zoo director S. Abu delivered the welcome address.

The two-storey office-cum-store complex features some modern facilities such as large-scale storage of animal food such as grains and vegetable, besides a freezer, food preparation area, cooking area and a slaughterhouse on one floor. On the floor above is the office with rooms for supervisors, curator and superintendent, individual lockers for staff, lunch area, resting area and changing rooms.

The butterfly garden, designed under the guidance of the Travancore Nature History Society’s members Kalesh Sadasivan and Baiju, has both host and larval plants to attract butterflies and encourage their breeding. A waterfall and a bridge enhance the aesthetics of the park, aimed at increasing the butterfly population that is under threat from pollution, urbanisation and climate change.

Six enclosures for exotic birds such as macaws, parrots and sun conures are another attraction. The zoo mobile app will contain details on birds and animals that will help visitors understand them better. It features audio in both English and Malayalam.

The four projects undertaken as part of zoo modernisation cost ₹3.53 crore in all.

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Printable version | Oct 23, 2021 8:56:43 PM |

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