Mysore Zoo is taking up several modernisation measure like generating gobar gas by using animal waste, introduce of Audio-Guide and new species of reptiles. In the same way, if everything goes as planned, animals housed at Zoo can enjoy the atmosphere of a real sanctuary, as Zoo authorities are planning to provide individual running water channel near all the animal enclosures round-the-clock! Modalities are being worked to provide round-the-clock water supply by recycling the water and re-using it to maintain the continuous supply of water.
About two years ago, the concerned authorities at Zoo had sent a proposal to the Centre under JNNURM to implement rain water harvesting and the project was estimated to cost Rs 8.5 crore. But the proposal could not be taken up, when again the authorities sent another proposal in February 2011 scaling it down to Rs 3.3 crores. The new proposal is also still pending.
The earlier project proposal of Rs 8.5 crore was slated to be implemented in four phases, consisting of collecting the Seepage Water under Phase 1 costing Rs 1.68 crore; implementation of Rain Water Harvesting under Phase 2 costing Rs 1.01 crore; Treatment and Recycle of Water in Phase 3 costing Rs 1.26 crore and finally Physical Design for Habitat improvement in Phase 4 costing Rs 0.98 crore. A Macro Plan Implementation at Karanji Lake under Phase 5 costing Rs 3.41 crore and other miscellaneous expenditure of Rs 0.16 crore were also envisaged.
The project was planned to be introduced under two broad categories – one to design an efficient water management system and the other improve the physical layout of the Zoo. Apart from this some of the major plans that were intended to be taken up were: construction of three ponds to store water so that it percolated into the ground thereby increasing the ground water level, construction of drains, construction of water conduit pipe, collection of waste water at one common point, its treatment and recycling, creating natural water cascades inside the enclosures, strengthening of moats were the major aspects of this project.
Speaking to Express Zoo Engineer Muralidhar said, `due to paucity of funds in the JNNURM, the proposal of Rs 8.5 crore was later revised in which the proposed Karanji Lake Macro Plan implementation costing Rs 3.41 crore was dropped. And the remaining proposal now costing Rs. 3.3 crore has been sent again in February."
"Zoo spread over a sprawling area of 79 acres is a good place to implement rain water harvesting. Recently Zoo on a temporary basis has constructed two ponds, one near the Indian Elephant enlosure and another beside the crocodile enclosure. Water is stored in these two ponds mainly to increase the ground water table", he added.
'Zoo needs about 5.5 lakh litres of water daily and is dependent mainly on borewells. The artificial water ponds recently constructed helps in increasing the ground water table', observed Muralidhar.
Though it is a temporary measure, once the project gets the approval and the grants are released, then water storage and rain water harvesting will become a permanent feature thereby drastically binging down water consumption and saving the precious natural resource, he added.