Cow Slaughter Act affecting dietary habits of zoo animals

Zoo officials says that chicken is not suitable meat for wild animal, mutton can’t be fed is it is too expensive

BIJAPUR; 08 Feb:  After the Government bringing cow slaughter prevention act in Karnataka, the Zoos of Karnataka that house carnivorous animals are in bigger problem as they are unable to get cow meat which is their primary food.

With the zoo authorities facing difficulty in procuring meat and unable to supply adequate quantity, the officials have sought permission from the government to exempt them in the law and allow them to feed cow meat to the animals.

After the government banned the slaughter of cows, the Zoo authorities have started supplying chicken to the animals as an alternate meat.

But since the animals are not used to chicken and chicken does not contain enough fat which is essential for wild animals, the zoo authorities fear that the chicken meat will weaken the animals.

A report said that during the recently held meeting the members of Zoo Authority of Karnataka have decided to seek exemption for the zoos from the act in order to supply red meat to the wild animals.

 According to sources, the State has around nine zoos where wild animals have been housed that need at least 1300 kilograms meat every day to feed these animals.

“ A few wild animals used to consume at least ten kg of red meat every day to meet their daily requirement. After consuming a good quantity of meat, they remained healthy and joyful. But now they are eating just about a half of the previous quantity. If they continue to eat lower quantities, then they will become weak and will fall sick soon”, the zoo officials said.

The forced change in diet is not only making an adverse impact on the animals but also putting a huge financial burden on the zoo authorities.  “ For purchasing beef, authorities were spending close to Rs. 6 crore annually, but if they buy mutton as an alternative to beef, then the cost will go up to Rs 18 a year. “ If we spend that much money only on food of the wild animals, then we will be left with no money for other expenses required for the upkeep of the zoo”, the officials  said.

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