Udaipur : The Sajjangarh Zoological Park at Udaipur will gets its first white tiger in Rama, a 5 year old adult cat from Chennai on Thursday. The park presently has an Orange Bengal tigress Damini who was left alone after the demise of a male tiger Monu an year ago. Though T-24 aka Ustad also lives in one of the enclosures here, but the banished tiger has been kept away from public display. Now the news of getting a white tiger has excited residents specially children who have never seen one in their life. In Rajasthan there is only a white tiger presently in Jaipur Zoo.
Rama was born at the Arignar Anna Zoological Park popularly known as Vandalur zoo in Chennai, which is one of the biggest zoos in South East Asia. He was the third cub born in 2011 to a pair of white tigers of New Delhi zoo that were given to Chennai under animal exchange program. Since there were 9 tigers at the Vandalur zoo, Rama was agreed to be given to Udaipur Park in exchange for a pair of wolves that have been sent there from Jaipur and Jodhpur.
A team of the forest department including a veterinary doctor is bringing Rama to Udaipur by road. “ The white tiger is being brought in a truck and his handler Chellaiah is also accompanying the team to Udaipur. They are expected to reach here on Thursday if there are no traffic jams and inclement weather” Rahul Bhatnagar, Chief Conservator of Forest (Wild life) said. Language is being considered a barrier between Rama and the local caretaker. “ Since the white tiger was born in Chennai and is conditioned to taking commands in Tamil only, it may take some time for the local handlers to tackle him and therefore Chellaiah will stay here for a week to help the local staff to get accustomed to Rama” the officer said.
Rama to be kept in quarantine for a fortnight
The news of Rama’s arrival has raised much excitement among the animal lovers however, it may take more than 2 weeks before people can actually get to see the beautiful beast. “ As per the instructions from the Central Zoo Authority, we have to keep the white tiger in quarantine for 15 days. This is to ensure he is acclimatized to the climatic conditions and fit to be brought for the public display” Rahul Bhatnagar said. Tigers are solitary creatures and so Rama too will have a separate enclosure. “ He will only be released with Damini during the mating season when the animals come to heat” he added. Currently, several hundred white tigers are in captivity worldwide, with about one hundred being found in India.