Shivani, the female bear at Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan and Zoo at Byculla, has finally found her match in Shiva. He has arrived, along with a pair of leopards from Gorewada zoo in Nagpur. As they have completed the quarantine for a month, visitors will soon get to see these new guests.
The Byculla zoo, popularly known as Ranibaug, is undergoing upgradation and renovation for the last few years. It is spread over 53 acres and extra 10 acres have been procured for a third phase of expansion. Since the arrival of Humboldt penguins, it has been the centre of attraction. The new additions to the penguin colony, Oreo and Oscar, are most popular among the kids. Now some other exotic animals are also getting the visitors’ attention.
In February 2020, a pair of Bengal tigers – Shakti and Karishma – was brought from Siddharth Garden and Zoo from Aurangabad in exchange for two male and two female spotted deer. Ranibaug didn’t have any leopard from 2005-2019. Three years ago, two leopards – Drogone, a male, and Pinto, a female – were brought to Mumbai from Pilikula zoo in Mangalore.
“Last month, we got another pair from Nagpur’s Gorewada zoo. Both are nearly three-years-old,” said Dr Sanjay Tripathy, the zoo director. Another official said that they will be introduced to the public in the next two to three days.