BAHAWALPUR: If you have a passion and love for animals, Bahawalpur Zoo is the right place to visit. With many different kinds of animal and bird species, this place will surely give you an experience of a lifetime.
Established in 1942 by the former Amir of Bahawalpur, Sir Nawab Sadiq Muhammad Khan Abbasi, the Bahawalpur Zoo is the fourth-largest zoo in Pakistan. It was also named ‘Sher Bagh’ (Lion garden). The zoo is spread over an area of 25-acres. From 1977 to 1982, the zoo remained under the control of the Department of Livestock, Punjab.
This zoo holds significant importance from others in Pakistan in terms of the procreation of the lions. Besides, the zoo holds the pride of the procreation of Bengal tiger, dapple tiger and black bear for the first time in Pakistan.
The zoo also houses an aquarium and zoological museum with stuffed birds, reptiles and mammals. A large pond in the zoo is home to pelicans, cranes, and geese. Several peafowl are also on exhibit. Blackbuck, hog deer, nilgai, European red deer, chinkara, and European mouflon are all housed in large paddocks.
The place not only serves as a place of enjoyment but is playing a key role in helping research students about wildlife.
• On October 3, 2015, a pair of lions attacked an employee of the zoo when he attempted to signal them into the enclosure after feeding them.
• In March 2015, a black buck and four pheasants died because they were not provided proper medical treatment by zoo officials.
• In 2013, the canal water supply for animals at Bahawalpur Zoo was stopped for almost two months.
• On August 5, 2013, a Bengal tigress gave birth to four cubs in the zoo.
• On December 22, 2011, an aging lioness, affectionately called “Poami”, passed away after a prolonged illness.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 19th, 2017.
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