5 Mishmi Takins coming to Darjeeling Zoo from Berlin

Mishmi Takins for Darjeeling zoo from Berlin
Darjeeling: Darjeeling is all set to welcome special guests from Berlin. Five Mishmi Takins are set to arrive at Kolkata's Netaji International Airport on Saturday from where they will be taken by road to Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park (PNHZP), Darjeeling. Mishmi Takins (Budorcas taxicolor) is a goat-antelope found in the eastern Himalayas. "5 Mishmi Takins are being brought from Tierpark Berlin-Friedrichsfelde GmbH Zoo to the PNHZP, Darjeeling. We are giving them two Red Pandas in exchange from the Darjeeling Zoo" stated V K Yadav, Member Secretary, West Bengal Zoo Authority. The five Takins are all zoo bred. They include Charles (male, seven months), Claire (female, two years nine months), Danny (male, two years 10 months), Ramona (female, 12 months) and Rock (male, one year three months).

"The Takins are scheduled to arrive at around 3 am on Saturday. There they will undergo a medical examination. From there they will be brought to Darjeeling by road. They are scheduled to arrive in Darjeeling at around 6 am on Sunday" stated Rajendra Jakhar, director, PNHZP.

A team from the PNHZP including vets and animal-keepers are camping in Kolkata to receive the Takins and accompany the animals to Darjeeling. "The animals will be kept under observation and will undergo check-ups for around three to four weeks. Then, they will be put out in the exhibit area. This is the first time that the PNHZP will have Takins," added the director. A male and a female red panda will be sent to Berlin in one or two months as part of the exchange programme. The Red Pandas are both zoo born. "At the end of this month we will also be sending two snow leopards (one male and a female) to the Kufri Zoo in Himachal Pradesh from the PNHZP. In exchange they will send us pheasants," stated Jakhar. The PNHZP was founded in 1958 and specialises in the captive breeding of the endangered Himalayan species including snow leopard, red panda, Tibetan wolf, blue sheep, Himalayan Tahr and Satyr Tragopan (crimson-horned pheasant). PNHZP is the pioneer zoo in India to have initiated the captive breeding programme of snow leopards. In 1986, this programme had been initiated with four snow leopards. There are around 16 snow leopards at PNHZP presently. The PNHZP is also the coordinating zoo for the red panda breeding programme (Project Red Panda) in India. The project was initiated in 1990. At present, there are eight males and eight females along with five cubs. The sex of the cubs has not been determined yet.

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Darjeeling is all set to welcome special guests from Berlin. Five Mishmi Takins are set to arrive at Kolkata's Netaji International Airport on Saturday from where they will be taken by road to Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park (PNHZP), Darjeeling

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