Friday, January 30, 2015

Three Gujarat lions to be gifted to Czech zoo.

AHMEDABAD: The pride of Gujarat will soon roar in a zoo in Czech Republic. The Gujarat Government has approved the proposal to give the lions to the Czech government. But the lions to be gifted will not be taken from the Gir forest but from Sakarbaugh Zoo in Junagadh.

Sources in the state government said that the Czech government had sought some lions from the central government for its zoo. The Centre sent the file to the Gujarat government because, under the Wildlife Protection Act, the permission of the Chief Wildlife Warden is required. Officials said the state's Chief Wildlife Warden, in consultation with the additional chief secretary, forest and environment PK Taneja and chief minister Anandiben Patel, has approved the proposal. The lions are likely to be sent after the Vibrant Gujarat Summit, probably in the first week of February, said officials.

The state government has decided to give one lion, one lioness and a cub to the Czech government from the Sakarbaugh Zoo. Officials said that according to the protocol, the lions will be sent by a special flight and then transported in a cage which will be covered from all sides with a black cloth. This will have to be done to prevent the animals from realizing that it was being moved as this can irritate the big cats.
The officials said that a special list of do's and don'ts, prepared by the forest department, mentions the age, height, weight, the food habits and even the behavior of the lions in the zoo. In many cases, since they are being transported to a foreign country, a small history of the animal — how it was caught from the wild or born in the zoo — is also given. The officer said that the caretaker of the Sakarbaugh will also accompany the lion to the Czech Republic and will stay there and feed the animal.

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