Experts moot rehabilitation plans for circus animals

February 6th, 2008 - 6:50 pm ICT by admin  

By Lokendra Singh

Jaipur, Feb 6 (ANI): Wildlife experts in Rajasthan have advocated the proper rescue and care measures for circus tigers and lions.

About 18 tigers and 30 lions are languishing at the Nahargarh rescue centre, situated about 30 kilometres from Jaipur.

But still the lives of these wild animals are no more different from those in a circus. Due to the absence of concrete plans for these wild animals, there is uncertainty surrounding their future and several of them are in a debilitated state.

Concerned wildlife experts and caretakers at the rescue centre feel that the Government should take special measures to rehabilitate these animals.

“We have African and Asiatic lions and the cross breeding between African and Asiatic lion will also help in increasing the population of these animals,” said Dinesh Gaud, forest ranger, Nahargarh Rescue Centre.

Some experts feel that since these animals have been kept captive for a long time and are being fed, they have forgotten the hunting technique. So in this situation it will be very difficult for them to find their hunt and survive in forests.

According to wild life experts if a proper safari is made where certain area is fenced and these tigers and lions are kept, then they can re-learn hunting. It might be very beneficial from tourism point of view as tourists can see a huge gathering of tigers or lions at a single place.

“They’ll take time to learn and it would be difficult to teach them. So one option can be that a huge enclosure is created for them and a safari is arranged so that people can come and see them. It would be good for them to get a natural habitat,” said Sudarshan Sharma, a wildlife expert.

Caretakers and concerned officers feel that if the Government introduces special rehabilitation plans, then these animals can again be trained to live in jungles or could be rehabilitated in sanctuaries like Sariska, otherwise, they would die one day in cages.

Some experts emphasise that a proper rehabilitation plan can definitely ensure that the animals are back in their natural habitat.

The Nahargarh rescue centre was established in 2001 following a Central Government ban on the use of performing animals by circus companies. Animals
rescued from circuses are rehabilitated at this centre. (ANI)

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