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Indira Gandhi Zoological Park is located amidst Seethakonda Reserve Forest covering an area of 625 acres in Visakhapatnam district of Andhra Pradesh. The construction for this ex-situ facility started in the very year 1972 when Wildlife Protection Act of this country came into existence and it was opened to public on 19th May, 1977. It is surrounded by beautiful and scenic hills of Eastern Ghats on three sides and Bay of Bengal on the fourth side. Being a Large category Zoo recognized by the Central Zoo Authority it houses 843 number of animals like mammals, carnivores, lesser carnivores, canids, ungulates, reptiles, birds and butterflies belonging to 123 species in a natural ambiance. This place is also a home to many free ranging animals and birds owing to its existence in a forest area close to Kambalakonda Wildlife Sanctuary.
Everyone loves to visit the zoo. Kids love to see the animals they have seen only in picture books and the adults accompanying the kids love to see the look of immense delight on the faces of these kids. One such zoological park that has everything to make it one of the fun places to visit in Vizag is the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park.
Surrounded by the Eastern Ghats on three sides and set in the laps of the Kambalakonda Forest Reserve this park is spread over a luxurious 625 acres and is home to almost 80 species of wildlife, making it one of the largest zoological parks in Andhra Pradesh.
With the Bay of Bengal nearby, the location of this park makes it an ideal spot for spotting several exotic bird species too. The weather and the climatic conditions of this area have allowed the fauna in the zoo to flourish and create a salubrious home for the animals.
This zoological park was named after the former Prime Minister of India and was opened for visitors on 19th May 1977. Since then it has been one of the preferred destinations of visitors who love to see wildlife in their natural habitat. There is even a mini-train inside the park to view all of its premises.
Layout of Indira Gandhi Zoological Park Vizag
One of the interesting facts about this park is that it has been divided into separate sections like carnivores, primates, ungulates, mammals, and birds. This division makes it easier for visitors to visit each section according to their preferences.
There is a section for butterflies and moths as well in this zoo but it is open only during the early hours of the day as butterflies and moths cannot fly during the late hours. The walls of this section are covered with information about these creatures to make the visit even more interesting and to create awareness about their characteristics.
Wildlife at the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park Vizag
The wildlife in the park includes a large number of birds, herbivores, primates, and reptiles. Bird watchers would be delighted to spot Pelicans (rosy and grey), ducks, painted storks, peafowl, spotted doves, parakeets, vultures, eagles, budgerigar, macaws, and even flightless birds like ostriches in this park.
Common langur, rhesus monkey, bonnet monkey (common Indian monkey), Olive baboon, ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta), Goeldi's marmoset, and Mandrill are some of the primates that inhabit this zoo. Recent additions to the primate world at the zoo are three new primate species of Chimpanzees, which have come from Tisch Zoo in Jerusalem.
The herbivore population of the zoo includes animals like barking deer, wild boar, elephant, sambar deer, spotted deer, gaur buffalo, swamp deer, nilgai, Hippopotamus, Eld's deer (thamin deer), and giraffe. Visitors can also spot carnivores like Tiger (leucistic and Bengal), cheetah, leopard, Jaguar, and Puma from the feline family. Jackals, hyenas and wild dogs from the lesser carnivore family are also present here.
Along with a separate section that houses butterflies and moths, the zoo also houses several species of snakes and reptiles like python, land tortoise, terrapin, monitor lizard, mugger crocodiles, and gharials. These animals look menacing at first sight but seeing them here adds to the thrill of the visit.
The varied animal populace of the zoo makes visitors feel like they are amidst a forest. If you are a fan of the nocturnal beauties then you must visit the Nocturnal Animal House to see animals like owls, civets, and porcupines.
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