Friday, 19 August, 2022
E-paper

Nat’l zoo animals in sorry state

Substandard food provided amid shortages of manpower, doctors

Bangladesh National Zoo authorities have allegedly turned a blind eye to the animals, leaving them in a sorry health condition.

Hundreds of people, especially children, throng the zoo every day to have glimpse of animals, birds and other species which they usually see on televisions and mobile screens.

 But the national authorities put on display such the ‘deadly’ animals that do not give any amusement to spectators.

Many say that instead of getting amusement, they become unhappy seeing the poor condition of the animals.

In practical, each carnivorous animal has a strong body which often roars loudly, but many of the animals kept in the zoo are thin and look tired.

According to the Bangladesh Zoo Act, weak and age-old animals cannot be put on display. But the zoo authorities concerned do not go by the law.

While visiting the zoo on Tuesday, a female lion (Indian lioness) named Kanta in shed C-10 (B) was found extremely thin. Beef and water were as seen in the shed, but she had no mind for that. She spends most of her time lying down. It doesn't even respond to the calls of visitors.

According to international standards, a lion needs 25 kg of meat per day. However, if you want to keep it alive, you have to give 7 kg to 10kg of meat food.

There was an allegation of providing substandard food in delay to the shed. There are complaints that the animals are not given food irregularly and the quantity of food is less too.

It is supposed to be delivered the food between 9:00am and 12:00pm to reach the animal shed. By 12 noon, food had not reached many animal sheds. The food for deer was given at 1:00pm.

A zoo worker, who did not want to be named, said although 138 kg of meat was calculated, most of it consisted of bones. Bones cannot be eaten by animals.

The truth of this information has also been found on the ground. It was seen a whole big bone lying inside the lion’s cage instead of meat.

A tiger is trying to chew that bone. Such images are also found in the cages of all carnivores.

Sajib Ahmed came to the zoo with two children from Mohammadpur in the capital. They stand in front of the C-10 (B) Indian lion shed and introduces them to the lion lying down. But the two children tell their father that it does not match the lion seen on television and in books.

Finally, Sajib Ahmed said here that the lions have become weak due to lack of food. Two children asked - Is there no food given to the lion? Because of this, the children were upset and leave the shed.

A monkey (Ulluk) was seen so thin and weak in shed SM 04. He is sitting idea while another monkey was seen so good and roaming around the shed.

A male donkey in shed L-8 walks much slower than all the other donkeys. There were multiple wounds on the body where flies and insects.

The donkey is trying to move his neck and tail to chase those insects but failed to do so. Grass was seen in front of him but it is very difficult for the donkey to eat it.

Several Ostriches and Emu birds were also found in the shed in a poor condition.

 Bangladesh National Zoo currently has about 3,515 animals of 129 species. A total of 56 animals in the zoo have already passed their normal lifespan. After winning the hearts of visitors for a long time, now they are tired, weary and devastated.

It has been found that there is a shortage of manpower and doctors in the national zoo. There are 198 people here instead of 245 officers and employees. There are no experienced officers and doctors to take care of such a large number of animals.

Dr Nazmul Hoda, a veterinarian of the national zoo, said a lion’s lifespan is about 15 to 20 years, but the Indian lion Kanta is 18 years’ old.”

“As the lion is very old, its condition is like this. But we are giving the lion food and others care.”

He also said the Ostrich are changing their molt so that it is looking like this. But they physically condition is well. Besides, male Emu bird used to fight with female Emu bird. They are hurt and they are under treatment.

While asked about the monkey’s condition, he said it is super old as its age is 25 years. Its lifespan was 15 to 20 years.

Hawkers were selling various food, including chips-biscuits, water by climbing over the walls of the zoo though their sales are strictly prohibited.

They were not seen to be monitored. Because of them visitors are basically throwing different types of paper everywhere. Besides, few dustbins were seen broken.