Nepal: Increase in number of rescued leopards, other wildlife strains resources
No place for rescued animals
KATHMANDU, DEC 24 – Due to the lack of a refuge for wild animals found abandoned or injured, the Central Zoo located is having a hard time playing the role of an orphanage centre, officials said.
“Rescues of wild animals, especially leopards, are increasing in recent years inside the Capital due to fragmentation and habitat disturbance. Due to the lack of proper department for the animals, the zoo has become a dumping site for them,” says Sarita Jynwali, project manager at the Zoo.
Six common leopards were rescued this year from different parts of the Capital. Likewise, a Ghoral, a Large Indian Civet, a Eurasian Eagle Owl, a Dusk Eagle Owl, a Himalayan griffon, a Black Kite, and a Asiatic Rock Python were rescued from different parts of the Capital this year. “The man-leopard conflict is on the rise since the last three years due to habitat-disturbance and decrease in prey species,” Jynwali said.
Jynwali said the zoo already has four leopards and there is no space for any more rescued animals. The zoo also lacks wildlife technicians, veterinarinarians, and security personnel to deal with tranquilising and treating the injured animals, as well as adequate money needed for the animals’ treatment and rehabilitation, according to officials.
Interestingly, the zoo is ready to welcome an orphaned tigress, which will be used for breeding purposes, from Chitwan National Park in the next few weeks. Similarly, along with the tigress an orphan leopard from the Park will be rehabilitated inside the zoo due to lack of an animal rescue centre.
Shiv Raj Bhatt, spokesperson at the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation said that a plan to establish an orphanage centre at Godavari has not been finalised yet.
Learn more about big cats and Big Cat Rescue at http://bigcatrescue.org