The state forest department is set to launch four ambulances for the rescue of injured wild animals of small size and their faster admission to the nearest veterinary hospitals.
According to sources in the forest department, one of the ambulances is to be posted at Alipur zoo in Calcutta. Another ambulance would be kept at the Jungle Mahal zoo.
Two other animal-exclusive ambulances would be used for north Bengal.
“Out of these two ambulances, one would be kept at the Bengal Safari Park near Siliguri and the other at South
Khayerbari park adjacent to Jaldapara National Park for the rescue and treatment of injured animals from the Jaldapara National Park and the Buxa Tiger Reserve,” a source said.
The ambulances have been donated to the forest department by Reliance Foundation, which was set up in 2010 to provide impetus to various philanthropic initiatives of Reliance Industries Ltd.
“These ambulances are fitted with modern equipment like hydraulic-gates and ramps for easy carriage, lifting and de-boarding of the injured animals,” said the source before adding that oxygen service, saline and preliminary treatment would be available in these ambulances.
“Sometimes treatment of injured animals cannot be started immediately because of numerous reasons. Now the treatment for the injured wild animals can be arranged immediately by using the special ambulance services. If a veterinary surgeon thinks it fit, an injured animal can be released at suitable places after its injury is healed,” a forest department source said.
Different animals like deers and leopards, dwelling in the forests of north Bengal, often suffer injuries for different reasons.
“Sometimes the animals are victims of speeding vehicles. Poachers hit those animals sometimes. Therefore the ambulance services would be quite beneficial for the injured wild animals,” a forest official said.
The two ambulances sanctioned for North Bengal are expected to arrive by next week, said a source.
Deepak M, divisional forest officer of Jaldapara Wildlife division said, “Preliminary treatment for wild animals of smaller sizes could be done at the well-designed treatment unit of the ambulance. These ambulances would be of great help in shifting such injured animals for better treatment... Animals dwelling at Jaldapara national park and Buxa tiger reserve would be largely benefited by these ambulance services.”