KATHMANDU, Dec 10: The Lalitpur-based Central Zoo has opened after a hiatus of nine months.
The zoo, which remained closed after March 20 this year owing to the spread of COVID-19, resumed on Thursday, by adhering to health-safety protocols to avoid the viral infection.
According to Dr Chiranjibi Pokharel, the chief of the Zoo Management, the zoo is strictly following the measures against the pandemic. Visitors are required to abide by various rules including mandatorily wearing a face mask, leaving the zoo premises within two and a half hours and avoid all kinds of food items inside the zoo. The zoo management has also decided not to allow more than 800 visitors to make an entry to the zoo while children are restricted from playing at the fun parks on the zoo premises.
The zoo management does not only keep the records of those entering the zoo but also of those making an exit from the zoo. The number of visitors leaving and entering the zoo will be equal, according to Dr Pokharel. Only a limited number of visitors at a time are allowed inside the zoo during its opening hours from 10AM to 5PM.
The zoo hosts a total of 1,068 animals belonging to 110 species. Of them, 33 are mammals, eight are amphibians and 17 others are fishes of different species. Fifteen of the 38 species enlisted as the endangered species are at display in the zoo. The major attractions in the zoo are tiger, bear, leopard and red panda.
No need to queue up for tickets
In order to prevent the transmission of COVID-19, the zoo administration has introduced online ticketing. One can purchase tickets through the zoo’s website and pay online.
As many as 1.1 million people on an average visit the zoo in a year and the zoo earns as much as Rs 150 to 160 million a year from the sale of tickets.
The zoo was established during the reign of the then Rana Prime Minister Juddha Shumsher in 1932 as a private zoo which was opened for public later in 2011 BS. The government handed the responsibility of zoon management to the National Trust for Nature Conservation for 30 years in 2052 BS.