Sun-bathing elephants, napping tigers: A trip to Hyderabad zoo after its reopening

Since reopening, the Nehru Zoological Park has taken a slew of measures to ensure visitors’ safety.
A trip to Hyderabad zoo after its reopening
A trip to Hyderabad zoo after its reopening
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When the gates of Hyderabad’s Nehru Zoological Park closed on March 15, little did they know that it would take nearly 7 months to open them again. However, on Tuesday, the zoo was opened to the public again, and they now have a slew of measures to ensure adequate safety for visitors in place.

At the entrance, visitors are stopped for thermal checking, and only after using sanitizer from the dispenser are they allowed into the zoo premises. Signboards at counters remind people not to touch railings, counters and other surfaces. Other sign boards also remind people about the other restrictions in place due to the ongoing pandemic.

Speaking about the arrangements A Nagamani, Deputy Curator at the zoo said, “We have taken several steps to ensure safety of the staff and the visitors. We have also started an online ticketing facility where visitors can avoid buying tickets from the counter by booking on the website or on the app. Visitors are now allowed to carry food from home and they will be allowed to dine at the designated areas inside the zoo. 40 sanitizer dispensers have been set up at various points in the zoo.”

The zoo has a total of around 1700 animals, including mammals, birds and reptiles. Around 450 staff take care of the zoo’s upkeep and the maintenance of the animals.

Speaking to TNM, an officer at the zoo revealed that the extended lockdown initially had a positive impact on the animals. The officer said, “The first few weeks after the zoo closed, there was considerable change in the animals as well. They seemed more relaxed and rested. The mood for mating also improves when the crowds are missing. A couple of months into the extended lockdown, even the animals seem to miss the crowds. For the staff as well as the animals it was difficult to witness an empty zoo for so long.”

The first day of the reopening saw 1,137 people visiting the zoo, out of which 147 were children. They were seen having a field day, catching glimpses of the many animals. While it is sure to take a long time for the footfall to reach the pre-COVID-19 times, the Nehru Zoological Park is surely a great place to take one’s family, considering several efforts are being taken to keep visitors safe.

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