Record number of visitors in Nandankanan Zoo in 2007

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Bhubaneswar, Jan 7 (UNI) Nandankanan Zoo carved a niche for itself with a record number of 15.07 lakh tourists visiting the Nandankanan Zoo during 2007, setting an all time high ever since the zoo was established.

Zoo Director Ajit Kumar Pattnaik said 2007 had been the year of joy as the Kanjia lake located within the premises of the zoo was included in the list of wetlands of national importance by the Environment and Forest Ministry.

The zoo, however, faced the challenge on account of incidence of anthrax in which a Blue Bull succumbed during the year. However, due to prompt preventive measures and coordinated actions the spread of the dreaded Anthrax could be efficiently controlled.

One of the most lovable white tigress - Sriya - died after 21 years of graceful living. She was very popular amongst the visitors and the keepers.

Mr Pattnaik said seven days mourning was observed in the zoo as tribute to the great lady.

At the same time the birth of two pangolin babies, birthday celebration of tigers, successful hand rearing of the leopard cub Varsha, successful rehabilitation of the 13 out of the 15 rescued animals and birds had been a matter of great joy for the zoo communities.

The zoo, he said, underwent a significant qualitative and quantitative improvement on the healthcare front. Some of the major breakthrough in this direction had been the standardisation of the use of blowpipe for administration of the vaccine and other drugs.

This had not only ensured the strict observation of the vaccine protocol but also helped in significant reduction of the stress in the animals.

The Director claimed that due to the intensive healthcare, the death rate of the captive animals and birds was reduced to 5.83 per cent, one of the lowest in the zoo history.

He said in a bid to draw the attention of the visitors to the zoo, the education programme was designed with a different flavour.

The celebration of the birthday of tigers was well received by the general public, school children as well as the media.

For the youngsters, zoo facilitated the first contact with nature thus playing a crucial, role in motivating them as the future conservationists.

A zoo aquarium with the well-researched education material in collaboration with CEE, Ahmedabad, installation of closed circuit television camera (CCTVC) at the gate complex and the main entry point for visitors safety and better surveillance were the other attractions of the year.

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