BAHAWALPUR: As a donation from the Punjab Wildlife Breeders’ Society, Bahawalpur Zoo got a pair of ostriches.
Reportedly, after a decade, the zoo has got two ostriches.
The ostriches are of a special African nature and if bought from the auction, they will usually cost between Rs0.8m and Rs1m.
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The arrival of the new pair of big birds was greeted by tourists to the zoo, but it was the kids who were excited about their arrival.
The enclave of Ostrich was a common gathering spot for zoo-visiting youngsters. Abdul Muqsit, a five-year-old boy from Bahawalpur, told The Express Tribune that he was delighted to see the large birds that had arrived at the zoo.
He clapped to catch the attention of the ostriches outside the enclave, who responded by looking back at him and flapping their wings.
Another boy came to see the two ostriches upon hearing from his mother about them. I’ve never seen such a huge bird before, he shared. I was told that it was a bird called Shutar Murgh locally, which was derived from the notion of a bird of camel height.
Grains such as grammes, spices, other plants and berries are consumed by the ostriches.
Amrish, a twelve-year-old girl attending the zoo, said she had never seen an ostrich before. This is the first time in real life that I have had the ability to see ostriches. I’m really pleased I saw them. The Bahawalpur residents now have a chance to come and see ostriches.
She had previously seen the big bird on social media sites including YouTube, she added. I enjoyed seeing all kinds of birds and other animals after I saw the bird videos online. This is the first time I’ve ever seen a huge bird in real life. I would like to have an ostrich at home as a pet, but it would not be allowed by my parents, like most others.
President Ameer Malik of the Punjab Wildlife Breeders Association reported that this was a pair of African ostriches of a very unusual breed. “If you were to import big birds, the price and the cost would range from Rs800,000 to Rs1 million.”
He added that to make the visitors happy, especially the children, the association had donated the pair of birds.
Sources added that the shortage of funds was the reason behind the unavailability of other unusual animals at Bahawalpur Zoo. This was described as the key reason why it was not possible for ostriches to be bought for too long.
Similarly, the Bahawalpur Zoo elephant died about 15 years ago, and since then there has been no substitution because there was no money to buy another.