New Delhi: The Delhi zoo has got a Royal Bengal tigress, the first in six years, from the Kanpur zoo for breeding proposes under an animal exchange programme, officials said on Thursday.
The tigress, Barkha, is six years old. She will form a pair with Karan, who is also aged around 6.
The Delhi zoo did not have a Royal Bengal tigress for six years despite it being a participating zoo for the Conservation Breeding Programme of Bengal Tiger, according to its Director Ramesh Pandey.
According to the Central Zoo Authority, the Conservation Breeding Programme is a science of conserving a species by preventing imminent population collapse in the wild due to a large number of eliminative pressures such as habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, industrialisation, poaching, illegal trade and climate change, etc.
The Delhi zoo had three Royal Bengal tigers till a year ago.
One of the three tigers, eight-year-old Rama died at the zoo in September last year due to kidney failure. He was brought from the Mysore zoo in 2014.
At present, the zoo has two male Royal Bengal tigers — B2 or Bittu and Karan — and seven white tigers — three females and four males.
Officials said 15-year-old Bittu was not in good health and reports suggest very high presence of creatinine that affects the functioning of kidneys.
Recently, the Delhi zoo acquired five species — wild boar, black and grey partridge, golden pheasant, Eurasian dove and jungle cat — from Chandigarh’s Chhatbir Zoo.
A male rhino from Patna will be brought soon for breeding purposes. There are two female rhinos in the Delhi zoo at present, Pandey said.
It is also likely to acquire chinkara and a pair of ostrich from Chandigarh and a pair of striped hyena from Jaipur.
The last chinkara of the zoo had died in June last year.
“There are around 88 species in the Delhi zoo at present. We hope to increase this number to 100 by the year end, Pandey said.