Bengaluru’s Bannerghatta Biological Park to welcome African lions, common elands

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First Published 12, Jan 2019, 6:01 PM IST
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Highlights

Bengaluru’s biological park is all set to welcome African lions and common elands from Germany. According to the Bannerghatta Biological Park (BBP) authorities, the Central Zoo Authority and director general of foreign trade have given clearance and by March two lions and five elands will be in BBP. However, wildlife enthusiasts expressed concerns over habitat adaptation of the animals at BBP.

 

Bengaluru: Karnataka is all set to become a new home for African lions and common elands from Germany as the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) and the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) have given clearance to Bannerghatta Biological Park authorities to house these animals.

According to the BBP officials, by March these animals will be transported to India. However, the wildlife enthusiasts expressed concern over habitat adaptation.

Deputy director of BBP, Kushalappa said the DGFT and CZA zonal office have already inspected the BBP, and a clearance certificate will be sent back to Delhi.

"The transportation and medical examination charges for animals will be borne by the Central government and once the process is completed, the adult animals will arrive. I hope by March, these animals will be in BBP," said Kushalappa.

According to him, one male and one female African lion and two male and three female common elands from Germany will be housed at BBP.

The African lion is 4.5 to 6.5-foot long from its head to its rump, and its tail measures from 26.25 to 39.5 inches long.

The African lions typically weigh 120 to 191 kg. However, their counterpart in Asia,  Asiatic lions tend to be much bigger, according to the World Wildlife Federation (WWF). They weigh 120 to 226 kilos and are 6.56 to 9.18-foot long. Their tails measure 23.62 to 35.43 inches.

With regard to elands, these animals belong to deer family and are widely present in Congo, Central African Republic, Guinea, Mali, Senegal, and Cameroon.  Eland is an herbivore, eating grasses, foliage and branches. They usually form small herds consisting of 15 to 25 members, both males and females.

"One male and one female African lions and two males and three female common elands will be brought to Bannerghatta Biological Park," said Kushalappa.

However, wildlife enthusiasts and wildlife authorisation officer of Karnataka Sharath Babu expressed concerns about the habitat adaptation of these animals.

"The animals brought from other countries have died in the past. Recently, green python and anaconda have died. The maintenance of the BBP is a concern. Instead of caged culture at the BBP, they should look beyond. Aviary, which is a vast area for animals to move and birds to fly should be created. The authorities blindly make the request to bring such animals," said a concerned Babu.

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