Animal behaviour is the standard for judging their physical and psychological well being. Behavioural management is a proactive approach designed to provide better care and highest level of well being by manipulating key elements in captive environment to achieve changes in animal behaviour to resemble closely that of the conspecific animal in the wild. Suitable environment enrichment facilities have been provided to simulate the natural ambience and to manipulate the critical components in the animal enclosure. Ex. Wallowing facility for elephants, sambar; perching facilities for birds; climbing facilities for primates etc. Positive reinforcement techniques like food rewards, praise, tactile contact, release to favoured place etc. have been followed.
MANAGING SOCIAL INTERACTIONS
Housing social animals in social groups and co-operative feeding are regularly followed e.g. reinforcing dominant animals for allowing sub-dominants to receive feed, attention etc.
MAINTAINING PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL BEING
Organizing the programmes like sensory stimulation (presence of feed), mental challenge (searching the hidden feed), species appropriate physical activity (encouraging arboreal life) etc. are being done.
The animals are under severe stress during summer. In order to improve their comfort level, heat relief measures have been undertaken during last year:
1.All deer enclosures have been provided with new thatched sheds.
2.All elephants in the zoo have been given shower and allowed to wallow twice every day to provide relief from heat.
3.Sprinkling of water has been arranged in enclosures housing ostrich, terrestrial birds, zebra and giraffe and in the walk through aviary.
4.Serpentarium has been provided with mud mounds and mud pots in multiple tiers to ensure differential temperature for facilitating their different physiological functions. Snakes require variable temperatures for digestion, moulting and reproduction.
5.Special dietary arrangements have been made for primates, bears and elephants to cool them off.
6.Shade nets cutting off sunlight, have been provided for aviaries, ostrich and white tiger enclosures.