Environment

Visakhapatnam’s Zoological Park awaits for more animal adoptions

A hippopotamus gets ready to gulp its feed at the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam Photo: K.R.Deepak

A hippopotamus gets ready to gulp its feed at the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam Photo: K.R.Deepak   | Photo Credit: K_R_DEEPAK

There are animals at the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park that will eat, sleep and live better if you contribute to their wellbeing

The Indira Gandhi Zoological Park spends nearly two crores a year just to feed its animals. In order to provide beter healthcare and diet, the zoo has been running an animal adoption scheme since 2011. While you cannot take the animals home, the adoption amount is spent for their fodder and health care. People who wish to ‘adopt’ an animal can do so by taking care of its maintenance costs for a year, or even for a day.

“The benefits of adopting an animal goes way beyond just healthcare and fodder, it helps people to understand the massive effort that goes into caring for these animals. It gives them an insight of the workings of a zoo,”says R Yeshoda Bai, curator of the zoo. “Though we have been trying to push the adoption scheme, we haven’t seen a great response from the public. In 2018-19, the zoo saw 16 ‘year-long’ adoptions. This year that number has fallen to 10. There are 30 ‘daily adoptions’ so far this year,” says Yeshoda Bai.

About the zoo
  • The Zoo was opened to the public in May, 1977.
  • It is a part of the Seethakonda Reserved Forest and is spread over 625 acres.
  • IGZP is home to over 800 animals belong to 90 species.
  • All the donations from the adoption programme are exempted from taxes.

Huge hoardings have been put up at various locations in the zoo to raise awareness among the citizens.

The adoption list has 24 animals. It was recently updated to include a pair of zebra and Sarus crane that were brought to IGZP last year. To adopt a pair of zebra for a year, animal lovers will have to shell out ₹60,000. To adopt them for a day, one has to pay ₹ 330. One Sarus crane is available for four days at ₹ 100 while one has to pay ₹ 10, 000 to adopt them for a year.

A pair of Grant's Zebra at Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam Photo: K.R. Deepak / The Hindu

A pair of Grant's Zebra at Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam Photo: K.R. Deepak / The Hindu   | Photo Credit: K_R_DEEPAK

“The most expensive adoption is an elephant at ₹ 4.3 lakh for a year. This figure was calculated in 2011 when the scheme was introduced. However, we have refrained from escalating the cost as that would mean almost doubling the amount mentioned here,” she says. The animals available in the price range of ₹ 10,000 to ₹ 25,000 are the most popular one for adoptions. “Tigers are usually adopted for a single day mostly by children. Most parents readily agree to it as it costs only ₹600,” she says. Birds are another crowd favourite as their yearly adoption ranges from ₹1000 to ₹9000 a year. The daily amount for a few birds is as low as ₹100. In a month’s time, the zoo is launching its own website through which people can adopt animals.

How to adopt
  • Choose an animal that fits your budget.
  • Fill up an adoption form available at the zoo and then pay the amount.
  • To know more 0891-2552081. You can email them at igzpvizag@gmail.com

The three animals that no one has ever adopted are the Elephant, Rhinoceros and Giraffe. “While it is an expensive proposition for individuals, corporate houses could definitely adopt them under their CSR activities,” she says adding how several companies and educational institutes have been approached by the zoo to do so.

Ring-talied lemurs relaxing under the shade of the thatched roof provided as a relief measure from the summer heat at Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam

Ring-talied lemurs relaxing under the shade of the thatched roof provided as a relief measure from the summer heat at Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam   | Photo Credit: K_R_DEEPAK

When Laxmi Narayan Sastry, manager of warehouse at Pharmazell Vizag Private Limited was assigned to look for CSR initiatives, the animal lover already knew what he wanted to support. For the last three years, the company has adopted a Star tortoise and some love birds. “We were helping out in infrastructural developments in villages, but when the staff of the zoo reached out to us with their adoption scheme we included animal welfare initiatives in our CSR,” says Sastry.

Most adopted animals or birds
  • Tiger- ₹600 for a day and ₹ 1.9 lakh for a year
  • Macaw- ₹100 for a day and ₹3000 for a year
  • Ring-tailed Lemur- ₹100 for a day and ₹36,500 for a year
  • Black Swan - ₹100 for a day and ₹18,000 for a year

Being a part of the scheme comes with it’s own benefits. The names of the adopters are displayed on the enclosures of the animals. The adopters are also given a certificate. “For those who pay more than ₹30,000 for adoption entry to the zoo is free for the year,” adds Yeshoda Bai

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Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 11:36:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/visakhapatnams-zoological-park-awaits-for-more-animal-adoptions/article30585244.ece

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