Byculla Zoo footfall reaches pre-Covid times

According to the zoo authorities, what’s drawing Mumbaiites to the Byculla Zoo are penguin chicks, tigers and hyenas. The footfall reached pre- Covid times
People visit Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan and Zoo, also known as Byculla Zoo after it reopened for general public last month. The footfall has reached to pre- Covid times as people throng the zoo this season. (Pratik Chorge/HT PHOTO)
People visit Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan and Zoo, also known as Byculla Zoo after it reopened for general public last month. The footfall has reached to pre- Covid times as people throng the zoo this season. (Pratik Chorge/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Nov 24, 2021 11:56 PM IST
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ByMehul R Thakkar

Almost after a month of its reopening, the Byculla Zoo (Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan) saw a footfall of 14k visitors last week- making the count to the pre-Covid-19 times. What’s drawing Mumbaiites to the zoo are penguin chicks, tigers and hyenas, according to the zoo authorities.

The figures shared with HT shows that the zoo is witnessing 5 to 6k visitors daily during weekdays and around 10 to 12k visitors during the weekends- an indication that visitor count is on par with pre-Covid-19 times, a positive sign the zoo authorities were expecting.

Byculla Zoo was reopened for the general public on November 1, 2021, after being shut from April 2021. According to the official data, between November 1 and 22, the zoo recorded a footfall of 125,702 visitors resulting in revenue of 5,096,450.

Speaking about the increase in the footfall, the Director of Byculla Zoo Dr Sanjay Tripathi said, “On last Sunday, we handled around 14k visitors, which means we have reached the pre-Covid-19 times. Penguin chicks, tigers and hyenas are quite a crowd-puller at the zoo.”

As the number of visitors increase, security remains a concern, briefing on the same, Dr Sanjay Tripathi elaborated, “We have also increased the security arrangements here and we also request people to maintain a queue while visiting the zoo. By next year, we are hoping to get two pairs of lions in the zoo that will become another major attraction among the visitors.”

The officials further informed us that one pair of Asiatic lions would be brought from Sakkarbaug Zoological Park in Junagadh while another would be brought from Kamla Nehru Prani Sangrahalaya, Indore. In exchange, Byculla Zoo has plans to procure two pairs of zebras from Ramat Gan Safari Park in Israel.

The Byculla zoo authorities had in February 2020 had got the two tigers from Aurangabad zoo, and had plans to keep them in the 3,500 square-metre tiger enclosure for the two new wild cats will have flora, fauna, landscape and terrain that replicates the conditions in the Ranthambore National Park at Rajasthan.

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Saturday, December 04, 2021