With the mercury falling rapidly and Bihar in the grip of a severe cold wave, the Patna zoo authorities have prepared special diet charts and made arrangements to keep the annimals warm by installing heat convectors in night shelters.
The diet charts of animals have also been changed according to the changing weather patterns.
Herbivores are being served additional items like honey, sugarcane, mahua, etc, while the carnivores are getting special meats along with eggs.
We have installed special 500 watt bulbs in an effort to keep the animals warm,h said Abhay Kumar, director of Patna zoo.
We are even serving Chyavanprash, which has proved very effective to fight the winter chill, specially to the recently brought chimpanzees at the zoo,h Kumar informed the HT.
He said learning from past experiences and on the advice of experts, the zoo had made arrangements in advance for the chilly weather. The zoo director clarified,
An animal house has two parts - the outer enclosure and the night house.
To protect animals in the outer enclosures, windbreakers and barriers have been erected.
Many shelters have also been renovated to suit the needs of animals in the biting cold weather.
To ensure proper intake of sunlight in the outer enclosures, the administration had to trim nearby trees a number of times.
For the night house, straw stacks have been arranged to keep the floor warm.
Bamboo nets and special covering materials have also been used to prevent the chilly winds from entering the night house.
These materials not only protect the animals from cold weather but also ensure a natural ambience for them,h he noted.
Apart from these arrangements, special care is being taken for the wellbeing of more sensitive animals like the lion, tiger, bear, monkey, chimpanzee, snakes, etc.
For example, the snakes undergo hibernation during winter.
As such, it is necessary to keep them warm and special bulbs have been installed for the purpose,Kumar stated.
In addition, two veterinary doctors are closely observing the health of animals at the zoo.
It seems that the zoo administration is gradually but continuously learning from its past experiences, as it has been observed that animals fall ill more often during winters in comparison to other seasons.