It is sad times for the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park in Visakhapatnam. The crowd favourite hippopotamus ‘Dalapathi’ in the zoo is no more and the officials are a quandary as to the ways of preventing further animal deaths. The reason could be anything but what comes out sadly after the postmortem are a small ball and coins. This lays stress on the fact that may be it is not always negligence on part of zoo keepers but also callous and reckless attitude of visitors that results in animals dying. A hippopotamus has three chambers and the ball had blocked one. This has resulted in intestinal impaction and subsequent sickness of the animal.
Dalapathi had come to the Visakhapatnam zoo from Nehru Zoological Park in Hyderabad. A lot of care has been given to the animal in the last few days. Treatment was given to him on advice of vets in Nandankanan Zoological Park in Bhubaneswar as well as Navin Kumar, a senior zoo doctor who has now retired after serving in Nehru Zoo, Hyderabad. Even after prolonged treatment for loss of appetite and care in a separate enclosure, Dalapathi succumbed to his deteriorating health.
In today’s world where care of animals in the wild or in the zoo is very prominently under focus, officials are doing everything to main health of animals. The blame however comes to them in the end. the attitude of many visitors to the zoo borders on abuse and it includes giving dangerous foods, provoking them or throwing hazardous articles their way. Despite all care and supervision this continues to be a problem and the sufferers are always the poor animals.