Air-coolers, seasonal fruits, multivitamin doses and adequate water have been arranged for the animals in Ranchi's Bhagwan Birsa Biological Park, popularly known as Birsa zoo, in a bid to deal with soaring mercury in Jharkhand, an official said on Saturday.
Most parts of Jharkhand are simmering around 40 degree Celsius. Daltonganj district recorded the state's highest at 42.4 degree Celsius on Friday, while Jamshedpur sizzled at 42 degree Celsius. Capital city Ranchi's maximum temperature registered 38.8 degree Celsius on Friday, 2.9 degree above the normal.
"Any major change in maximum temperature is unlikely during the next four days in Jharkhand," said Abhishek Anand, in-charge of Ranchi Meteorological Centre.
Veterinary doctor of Birsa Zoo Dr OP Sahu told PTI that scorching sun heat is taking a toll on humans as well as animals. "In a bid to protect the animals from summer heat, we have taken several initiatives such as air-coolers for carnivores, especially lions, tigers, leopards and sloth and Himalayn bears," he said. Shades have also been created to protect them from direct sun heat.
He said that there is also change in their daily diet. "The meat intake of carnivores has been reduced by 2 kg from the daily diet. In winter, we provide 12 kg of meat to lion and tiger, while they are given 10 kg of meat daily in summer." Spread over 104 hectares of area in Ranchi’s Ormanjhi, the zoo houses about 1,450 wild animals representing 83 different species of mammals, reptiles and birds.
The herbivores are being provided seasonal fruits such as watermelon, cucumber and others to keep their bodies hydrated. Multi-vitamins, drinking water and glucose are also being served, he said.
"Health of animals is also being monitored at regular intervals," Sahu said. Meanwhile, the Palamau Tiger Reserve (PTR) has installed solar pump based water supply system so that animals do not face water shortage in the scorching heat.
PTR field director Kumar Ashutosh told PTI, "With rising temperature, waterholes in the reserve are gradually drying. There are 222 waterholes in the reserve. We are filling the waterholes with water tankers. Besides, there are four solar pump based water supply systems and water is being continuously provided from there."
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