Monday, July 10, 2000,
Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

"Overcrowding spread tigers’ disease"

BHUBANESWAR, July 9 (PTI) — Overcrowding of tigers in a single zoo is a major reason for the spread of the dreaded trypanosomiasis infection, the Member-Secretary of the Central Zoo Authority (CZA), Mr P.R. Sinha, leader of the experts’ team probing the death of 12 Royal Bengal tigers at Nandankanan zoo, said here today.

The Nandankanan zoo had as many as 56 Royal Bengal tigers, including white tigers, and the state government had fixed a price tag of Rs 5 lakh per animal. Though a few tigers were sent out to zoos in and out of the country in exchange for other animals in recent years, the hefty price tag acted as a bottleneck in their dispersal, he said.

He said the CZA had asked all zoos, including Nandankanan, in the past to reduce the number of tigers to manageable proportions.

It is, in fact, very difficult to handle wild animals and check their individual health condition in a zoo as it amounts to some amount of invasion subjecting them to stress. This stress can even result in their death, Mr Sinha said.


Steps to save peacocks

MORENA, (MP) July 9 (PTI) — A team of agricultural scientists and veterinary experts from Bhopal has been summoned here to deal with the situation arising out of the death of more than 80 peacocks, after consuming chemically treated bajra, in Maharajpur and Sitapur villages in the last few days.

District Collector Pramod Agarwal told PTI today that urgent steps would be initiated to save the remaining peacocks on the basis of the report submitted by the high-level team, expected to arrive by evening.

He said a sick peacock was at present undergoing treatment.

The peacock deaths were first reported on June 24 by the patwari of Maharajpura village to the tehsildar who referred the matter to the police station concerned.

The Deputy Director of the Veterinary Department, Dr S.P. Singh, maintains that the deaths were caused by chemically-treated bajra.

Dr A.K. Sharma, a veterinary expert, said the post-mortem examination report indicated that some peacocks had died due to four types of chemicals sprayed on bajra to prevent it from being affected by fungus.

Mr Agarwal after visiting Sitapur, where 29 peacocks had died yesterday, said prima facie the deaths appear to be the result of consuming chemically-treated bajra.

Meanwhile, the People for Animals, a voluntary organisation that works for the welfare of birds and animals has demanded a high-level inquiry into the deaths.

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