The Telegraph
Thursday , July 24 , 2014
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Follow nature trail to animal kingdom

The scenic Nature Trail at Tata Steel Zoological Park will soon take visitors young and old on an educative and exciting excursion, providing them a broader insight into the animal kingdom.

The zoo authorities have decided to put up signages at strategic places along the 200km stretch that snakes from the leopard enclosure to the one hosting ostrich.

The signages will tell visitors where they can spot a particular bird, reptile or butterfly along the trail during a given time slot. This apart, the signages will also display information about the species, their classifications and the places of their origin.

According to sources at the zoo, the trail, set up in 2006, hosts 12 species of birds namely night heron, purple sunbird, egret, red-wattled lapwing, white-breasted waterhen, pond heron, lesser whistling duck, rose-ringed parakeet, purple moorhen and small Indian kingfisher. Also, as well as six species of reptiles, comprising Indian rat snake, garden lizard, Indian cobra, checkered garter snake, Indian rock python and Bengal monitor lizard, live by the trail. Moreover, at least 20 species of butterflies add colours to the scenic stretch.

Tata zoo director Bipul Chakravarty maintained a survey of the area had been conducted recently to gather information about these species which would be used in the signages. “We are planning to put up the signages along the route after the monsoon,” he added.

Chakravarty said the Nature Trail had been the main draw for visitors of all age groups and the authorities were keen to educate animal lovers, who come in good numbers throughout the year.

“The objective is to help them have a better understanding about the species they spot while moving along the wild space,” Chakravarty told The Telegraph.

Moreover, the zoo authorities are planning to make the stretch more thrilling and attractive. “We will embark on a beautification drive, do landscaping along the route. Also, we are keen to make the stretch a bit more wild,” he added.

The Nature Trail is open for members of the Bird Watchers’ Club from 5am to 8am and general visitors from 9am to 5pm daily.