Nainital, Dec.4 : The Bharat Ratna Pandit G B Pant High altitude zoo is a major attraction for tourists visiting Nainital.
Located 2,020 metres above sea-level and spread over five hectares of area, the zoo is the only High Altitude Zoo in north India after the zoos in Darjeeling and Sikkim.
The zoo comprises various animals found in Himalayn region. Many of them belong to endangered species. Snow Leopard, Siberian Tiger, Tibetan wolf, Sambar and Himalayan bear are among the many endangered species kept here. It is also home to different species of birds.
One of the attractive features of this special zoo is the way it has been developed. Efforts have been made to develop in such a way that the inmates at the zoo, despite being kept in their enclosures, can feel that there are in their natural habitat.
Annually around 125,000 tourists visit this zoo. Most of them are drawn to watch snow leopard, hill fox, Himalayan black bear and Tibetan wolf at this zoo.
"We have kept all those animals in this zoo that are found at such an altitude. Animals like snow leopard, Himalayan bear and Siberian tiger along with exotic species of birds are kept in this zoo. Other than these rarely found, animals like Himalayan Martin is also found in this zoo," said Manoj Shah, Range Officer at the Bharat Ratna Pandit G B Pant zoo.
Tourists enjoy a gala time visiting this special zoo with families.
"We saw many animals here and also went to Jim Corbett Park. But, unfortunately, we were not being able to see any of the animals. We have seen leopard, dear and birds here today. It's been a nice experience for us," said Shweta, a tourist from Hyderabad.
The zoo has nicely constructed animal enclosure like of snow leopard and all are at an altitude.
Nainital Zoo is providing a habitat to snow leopard, Siberian tiger, Himalyan black bear, hill fox, Plam civet cat, ghoral, silver pheasants, barking deer, sambhar deer, owl, eagle, Rose ringed Prakeet and many more.
Besides keeping the Himalayan animals and birds, it also conserves steadily vanishing species. Several plants have been planted to maintain the natural habitat at the zoo.
The zoo remains closed for visitors on Monday and on national holidays. By Vipul Goel