Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology (BUET) has suggested the government to launch a “Dhaka And Rangpur Zoo Modernization Project” involving Tk 300 crore to raise the standard of country’s zoos to international level.
At the request of Fisheries and Livestock Ministry an expert team of BUET led by Professor Dr. Khandaker Shabbir Ahmed put forward a comprehensive plan after conducting a digital survey and feasibility study.
Both the feasibility study and survey report were submitted by the BUET expert team to the Minister for Fisheries and Livestock Minister Abdul Latif Biswas last month.
Talking to the BSS, Dr Shabbir said the Dhaka Zoo would certainly secure top position in international ranking if the said project is implemented as per the suggestions made by the BUET experts.
At present Dhaka Zoo is in the fourth position considering the land area of different zoos of the world.
Dr Shabbir said the study report emphasized on three areas — education, research and amusement — aimed at acquiring knowledge as well as attracting the visitors.
“A standard zoo would be a storeroom of knowledge. The visitors especially the children and students would gather knowledge and learn about wild-life and different kinds of trees and so on,” he said.
Dr Shabbir said the study report also focused on carrying out research works on the different components in the zoo including cage, micro-climate and introducing water cruise and circular train for amusement and business development.
The study report has suggested changing the existing system of caging the animals that gave wrong message to the children.
“The present cage system in the zoo is miserable, even children are getting wrong idea about the lifestyle of an animal by watching those in an undersized cage,” he said.
The study report suggested an alternative system of caging the animals following the international standard. It recommended a deep canal surrounding the area or to expand the area to focus the cage less visible, said Prof Amreen, another team member.
“In the cage the animal environment should be natural with enough trees and other essential staffs,” she said.
Expansion of the cage area in the zoo is one of the vital issues of the report. “The expanded area would help the animal to feel like forest”, the report said.
The expert team of BUET also suggested for creating the post of botanist, guides and animal psychologist for behavioral enrichment of animals.