Exchange between Okinawa Kid's Foundation, Japan and Govt. of West Bengal : In an exchange programme between Okinawa Kids Foundation, Japan and Govt. of West Bengal a pair of elephants was sent to Okinawa Zoo who in turn sent three pairs of Himalayan Thar (3:3) and two pairs of Blue Sheep (2:2). The animals arrived in Kolkata airport at 1:45 a.m. and were received by the zoo officials. The animals were quarantined for a month and were observed strictly in terms of its diet, behaviour and health. On 23rd Nov. '09 the animals finally reached Darjeeling Zoo safely at 1 p.m. after twenty five days of completion in the quarantine shed. The animals were shifted to the night shelter that day and the next day released in their respective enclosures.
The other arrivals in the zoo has been a pair of Asiatic Black Bear (1:1) and Goral (0:1) from Itanagar Biological Park, Arunachal Pradesh on 18.1.2009 in exchange for one female common leopard, one pair of lady Amherst (1:1) and one pair of Silver Pheasant (1:1)
Seven numbers of Red Jungle Fowl (2:5) was received in the park from Morni, Chandigarh on 25.3.'09 in exchange for four Hill Mynas. On 6.2.'09 three numbers of Lady Amherst (0:3) was sent to Alipore Zoo, Kolkata in exchange with three numbers of Golden Pheasant (3:0) which arrived in the park on 9.2.'09.
On 9.3.09 the zoo received 2 pairs of Grey langur (2:2) from Deer park, Salt lake, Kolkata. A pair of Grey langur (1:1), one pair of Golden Pheasant (1:1) and one Clouded leopard (1:0) was exchanged for 1 pair of Clouded leopard (1:1) from Sephaijala Zoo; Tripura. Team left Darjeeling on 18.3.2009 and arrived back with the animals on 27.3.2009.
All the arrived animals are doing well and have adjusted to their new environment.
WORKSHOP HELD ON "CONSERVATION BREEDING OF SNOW LEOPARDS :
Two day Workshop held on "Conservation Breeding of Snow Leopards" : It was held at Darjeeling Zoo from 6th Nov to 7th Nov 2009, organized by Darjeeling Zoo in collaboration with the Central Zoo Authority with an aim towards working out a Conservation Breeding Management Plan for intensive management of the Snow Leopards in captivity.
Mr. A.K. Jha, IFS Director PNHZ Park, formally welcomed the guest in an inaugural function held in the late evening on the 7th Nov '09. The workshop cum training programme began with lighting of the lamp our honorable Chief Guest Mr. K.S. Rajendra Kumar IAS Chief Secretaty (Forest) Govt. of West Bengal along with other dignitaries
Experts like Dr. Yash Veer Bhatnagar, Senior Scientist of Nature Conservation Foundation and Director, Snow leopard Trust - India, Dr. L.N. Archarjyo Retd. Vet, Dr. Mir M. Mansoor, Chief Wildlife Biologist (Vet), Dr. Brij Kishore Gupta, Evaluating and Monitoring Officer CZA, including veterinarians and biologists working both in-situ and ex-situ facilities, forest officials, NGO members etc participated in the workshop. The participants had come up with different presentations regarding the Conservation of this species both in-situ and ex-situ, health issues were also discussed. At the end of the workshop after much discussions and arguments recommendations were drawn which are as follows :
Committee should be set up to evaluate all the management aspects, including all captive facilities. Snow leopard feasible study to setting an alternative site if necessary for Snow Leopard Conservation Breeding. Monograph of the captive management of snow leopard made by the coordinating zoo, financed by Central Zoo Authority (CZA) that
contains enrichment guidelines on the enrichment of snow leopard in the consultation with the people working with snow leopard in
captivity. Independent institute for ex-situ including conducting Diploma courses. A fulltime and trained Zoo biologist should be provided for snow leopard breeding programme. Advanced training for the supervisory staff, veterinary officers working with zoos to foreign zoos working with the species. Utilized the best genetic resource from the zoo, organization like CCMB, LACONES. The Project Snow Leopard initiated by Wildlife Institute of India (WII) should expand its objective to integrate ex-situ management to save
the species. The Work / findings of the studies under projects in-situ supported / financed should be shared with Central Zoo Authority (CZA), including
concerned zoos. CZA required concerned zoos to be member of snow leopard network of Snow Leopard Training maintained by the
snowleopard_network.org The coordinating zoos should come up with a list of expert persons.
RESCUE OF ANIMALS FROM DIFFERENT AREAS IN DARJEELING :
On 23rd March 2009 a melanistic form of Common leopard, female was rescued from Harsing, Lebong. The animal had entered a poultry pen and had already seized some chickens. The villagers in no time shut the animal inside the pen and informed the zoo officials. The animal was tranquilized and brought to the zoo.
An Asiatic Black Bear (Ursus thibetanus) aged four months (approx.), male was rescued on 5th November 2009. The animal had entered a village where it was caught and brought to the zoo.
A male leopard cat (Felis bangalensis) was rescued from Jorebunglow where it had entered a poultry pen and hadalready killed a chicken. Animal captured and brought to the zoo.
A male langur had entered the zoo vicinity during the month of May. Efforts were made to drive the langur away from the zoo compound, but efforts failed. Slowly as days progressed the langur was observed to come near the cage where the other langurs are kept. It frequently visited its inmates and finally on 28th May 2009 the animal was sedated and captured.
All the rescued animals are fine and in good health except for the Leopard cat that died after three days of its arrival in the zoo. On post mortem, the findings revealed parasitic load (both tape worm and round worm infestation)
ENRICHMENT PROGRAMME FOR CARNIVORES :
The months of November '09 was marked as a month of enrichment for the Carnivores, with an aim to increase the animals well being by increasing exercise, satisfying behavioural needs and optimizing the level of stimulation that our animal receive as well as attempting to reduce abnormal behaviours. Enrichment also increases the visibility of the animals and keeps them active.
The animals have adapted well to these forms of enrichment and no adverse effects have been observed so far. Besides enrichment there has been lots of innovation work done at the night shelters. E.g. the old bear house was dismantled and an entirely new night shelters were built which are more spacious, airy plenty of light, etc. similar innovative ideas were also used for the snow leopard night shelter at the Breeding Center.
RETIREMENT AND DEATH OF STAFFS :
Mr. Kiran Moktan, Animal Supervisor retired on 31.08.2009 after serving the zoo for a period of 27 years. His dedication towards working for the Conservation Breeding of Snow leopards (Uncia uncia) is worth mentioning. The zoo will always feel his absence. Mr. Gopal Tamang, Driver retired on 31.10.2009. He has been working in this zoo since its inception and has served this zoo for the longest period of time. His friendly nature will be missed by the staffs. Mr. Ujjawal Tamang, Head Clerk left for heavenly abode on 01.08.2009; he was still serving the zoo. The family of PNHZ Park will always remember him for his sincere service to the zoo. May his soul rest in peace forever. Mrs. Munna Biswakarma, Gardner died on 25.11.2009. May her soul rest in peace.
ZOO WELCOMES SOME OF THE DIGNITARIES :
Name of the Dignitary
Date of Visit
Mr. R.N. Hembram, Minister of State, Forest. Govt. of West Bengal
Mr. K.S. Rajendra Kumar, IAS Addl. Chief Secretary, Deptt. of Forest, Govt. of West Bengal
07.05.2009 & 31.12.2009
Mr. A.K. Raha, IFS PCCF. West Bengal
Mr. M.P. Madani, Hon'ble Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha)
Mr. Taralochan Singh, Hon'ble Member of Parliament
Mr. Ajay Singh, Chontala Hon'ble Member of Parliament
Mr. V.S. Bajwa, Hon'ble Member of Parliament
Mr. Axel Gebauer, Director Gorlitz Zoo, Germany
Mr. Bhim Dhungel, Hon'ble Ministr, Forest & Tourism, Govt. of Sikkim
Mr. C.S. Yalakki, IFS CCF, Kerela
Mr. G.J. Teggi, IFS CCF, Kerela
Mr. A.P. Joshi, Addl. Secretary Deptt. of Atomic Energy
Mr. K. Choudhuri, Vice Chairman, West Bengal Minorities Commission.