After penguins, now Byculla zoo will house 16 more animals including emu, mandrill, okapi, jaguar, white lion, and chimpanzee. The BMC has received the go-ahead from Central Zoo Authority (CZA) to carry out its Rs 200-crore expansion plan for Byculla, for which the work is likely to begin in May.
According to Indian Express, on February 12, the CZA’s technical committee approved the master plan, which will create enclosures over a period of two years for exotic animals like the jaguar, cheetah, white lion, hippopotamus, wallaby, zebra, giraffe oryx, okapi, cassowary, emu, ostrich, ring-tailed lemur, mandrill monkey and chimpanzee.
Years after litigation, the BMC recently acquired a seven-acre plot from Mafatlal Mills. The Byculla Zoo, also known as Veermata Jeejabai Bhosale Udyan, was built in 1982 and is spread over 53 acres. According to the report, the BMC in its phase II of Byculla Zoo expansion plan will get several animals, including jackals from Surat, wolves from Jodhpur, lions from Junagadh, tigers from Aurangabad zoos, four-horned antelope, black buck and otters, as well as construct 17 animal enclosures.
Meanwhile, three enclosures for spotted deers, sambar deers, and barking deers have been constructed as part of the second phase of expansion. The enclosures are expected to be inaugurated within 15 days along with the groundbreaking ceremony of a landscaped garden and maintenance work of some heritage structures.