Tiger dies at Dhaka zoo

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Tiger dies at Dhaka zoo

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The oldest Royal Bengal Tiger Garjan died at Mirpur Zoo early yesterday. It was 19 years old and suffering from old age complications, sources at the zoo said confirming the demise.

Garjan lost all its molar (chewing) teeth and stopped taking food for the last couple of days as it was ill, said the sources.

This is the third death case of a big mammal in one week in Dhaka zoo. Earlier a lion and just three days ago a young giraffe died there.

The number of dead animals reaches 21 in one year showing poor health management at the zoo.

Acting Curator of the Zoo Bibekananda Chowdhury said Garjan was born and brought up in the zoo and recently had been suffering from old age complications.

“Generally a tiger survives for 15 years in a cage, but Garjan lasted more than 19 years,” he said, adding, “We are properly taking care of the tigers.”

Now the Dhaka zoo has 10 more Bengal Tigers, one of which is more than 17 years old.

Sources in the zoo said the authorities formed a medical board for Garjan’s treatment and the board members examined the tiger Thursday.

The zoo officials said Garjan died around 4:30am yesterday and it was buried inside the zoo premises following an autopsy.

The lone Rhinoceros is also very sick and it is suffering from Pymetra disease for the last one and half years, said the zoo sources. Besides, a horse, a samber (Neelgai) and a kudu (a deer-like mammal) are also ill. The zoo officer has applied to higher authorities to arrange proper treatment for the animals.

Following the death of the giraffe, the curator and deputy curator of the zoo had been suspended and a probe committee was formed to investigate the death. The probe committee is expected to submit the report by today.

Earlier in the first week of May, a samber died while a baboon, a wildebeest and the last member of Malayan tapir died in March. One Bengal Tiger, two fresh water crocodiles, a zebra and a stork died in February.

The Dhaka zoo is located on 186 acres of land in Mirpur housing around 2,160 animals of 157 species. Of them 57 species are mammals, including elephant, Royal Bengal tiger, lion, cheetah, rhinoceros, zebra, monkey, chimpanzee, and hippo. There are 61 species of birds, 11 species of reptiles, including snakes and crocodiles, and 28 species of fish.

The zoo attracts around 10,000 visitors a day.



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