Since the COVID-19 outbreak, many public spaces have been closed, including zoos. While some zoos reported that the animals were happy without the constant movement of humans and clicking of cameras, others like the Nandankanan zoo in Bhubaneshwar reported that it was hard for them to take care of the animals and make ends meet without the main source of income – entry tickets.
Nandankanan zoo, reportedly, generates around Rs 15 crore revenue a year to meet its expenses but failed to collect a single penny owing to the lockdown restrictions, until it reopened on October 4.
Therefore, to collect the funds necessary for animal care, Nandankanan zoo and some other zoos across the country have introduced online animal adoption. People can virtually ‘adopt’ any animal of their choice for a specified period, and the money they pay will go towards the food, grooming, and medical expenses of that animal.
Although this is not entirely a new thing – adoptions were encouraged earlier as well to create a sense of involvement and bonding between visitors and zoo animals — now it has become a necessity for many zoos.
Here are some zoos offering online methods of adoption –
1.Nandankanan zoo, Bhubaneshwar
Several animals, ranging from lions and tigers to various species of birds and snakes, are up for adoption.
You can visit their official website to see the list.
- Select the animal you want to adopt.
- Choose the number of animals you want to adopt.
- Choose the time period you wish to pay for (ranges from 1 month to 1 year).
- Enter your details, upload a picture of yourself and your aadhar number for identity verification.
- Finally, you can pay through an online mode.
Once you have made the payment, the zoo will send a confirmation through email and update their ‘List of adopted animals’ page with your name and contribution. Following this, they will also update the same on their social media handles such as Twitter and Facebook.
2. Indira Gandhi Zoo, Visakhapatnam
Located in the Kambalakonda Reserve Forest in Visakhapatnam, this zoo needs people to adopt animals so it can continue to provide good food and facilities for its residents.
Here’s how you can adopt an animal at this zoo:
- Visit their official website.
- Enter the necessary information
- Select the animal of your choice
- Select the period you wish to provide for. It ranges from one day to one year.
- Pay via online mode.
You will get confirmation through a message or email. According to the official website, donors who give an amount ranging from Rs.10k to 30k will have their name etched onto the enclosure for the animal and receive free entry into the zoo for five persons once a year. They will also receive an adoption certificate and get regular updates about how the animal is doing.
Those paying an amount above Rs.30k will receive the above-mentioned benefits along with a t-shirt, cap, and free entry to participate in events held at the zoo.
3. Mysore Zoo, Karnataka
To be part of Mysore zoo’s wildlife conservation programme, you can adopt your favourite animal for one year or a shorter period.
- Visit the official website and access the adoption brochure.
- You can download the brochure or print it.
- The brochure contains details about the animals you can adopt and the price depending on the number of months you will adopt the animal for.
- Make an NEFT payment to the bank according to details given in the brochure, and take a screenshot of the confirmation you receive once the payment is made.
- Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with attachments of the filled application form along with the screenshot of payment.
Once the zoo has received this, they will send you a confirmation via email.
Mysore zoo also provides a zoo membership for one year to those who pay more than Rs. 5000 to adopt an animal.
To know more about animal adoption, visit the official website.
The above three are not the only zoos in India that allow animal adoption; most of them do provide the facility and have introduced an online way of doing so owing to the pandemic.
(Edited by Nishi Malhotra)