Ranchi: With Jharkhand experiencing sweltering heat, zoo authorities are making arrangements like providing air-coolers and special diet to ensure that inmates stay healthy at Bhagwan Birsa Biological Park, popularly known as Birsa zoo here.
Jharkhand witnessed a temperature of around 40 degree Celsius and Ranchi recorded its maximum at 38 degree Celsius in the past 24 hours.
The authorities have provided air-coolers in enclosures for tigers and lions, while fruits like water melon and cucumber are being served to herbivores. Besides, they are also being given glucose, drinking water mixed with Electral powder and multi-vitamins to protect them from the impact of heat, zoo officials said.
Spread over 104 hectares of area in Ranchi’s Ormanjhi area, the zoo houses about 1,450 wild animals comprising 83 species of mammals, reptiles and birds.
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Zoo director Jabbar Singh told PTI, “Animals, mainly carnivores, suffer the most from rising mercury. So, we have ensured proper summer diet, adequate water and shade for such animals.
“We have installed coolers for nine tigers and four lions in the zoo, besides putting jute sacks around the cages to provide protection from heat. Herbivores are being served fruits having water content to keep them hydrated.” Veterinary doctor of the zoo Dr O P Sahu told PTI that rising temperature increases the respiration rate of animals, especially those of carnivores. “So, diets of tigers and lions have been restricted. Their daily meat intake has been reduced by 2 kg . The health of animals is being monitored at regular intervals by the keepers,” he said.
Dr Sahu said elephants are being given regular baths and fruits having water content. According to the weather bulletin of Ranchi’s meteorological centre, six districts of the state –Garhwa, Palamu, Chatra, Latehar, Simdega and West Singhbum –are likely to experience heat wave condition on Thursday.
Garhwa, Palamu, Chatra, Koderma and Giridih districts might be experiencing the same on Friday, it said. The weather department said any major change in maximum temperature is unlikely till April 2. “The temperature may gradually dip by two to three degree Celsius after April 3,” the bulletin said.
Jharkhand’s Daltonganj recorded the highest 42.7 degree Celsius in past 24 hours, while Garhwa simmered at 41.4 degree Celsius. Jamshedpur recorded 40.6 degree Celsius in past 24 hours.
In view of the situation, Ranchi’s Sadar Hospital has reserved 20 beds for heat stroke patients. The hospital authority is planning to dedicate about 100 beds for such patients.