Zoos are the habitats of the wild animals. They live in the environment as such in forests. Much rare specious are preserved here from perils. “Vandaloor zoo” OR “Arignar Anna Zoological Park” is one of the famous zoos in India. The zoo is situated in Vandaloor, Kanchipuram district, Tamilnadu. It is located at 32 kms from the metropolitan city Chennai. Arignar Anna Zoological Park also serves as salvage and rehabilitation center for animals. Reports say that over 8,00,000 people visit the park annually.
Vandalur Zoo establishment
The first public zoo was established in 1855 in Madras which is now called as “Chennai”. Initially, it was located near Park Town, Madras. However, due to some official reasons, the zoo had been expanded and moved out from Chennai city. In 1979, the zoo was shifted to Vandalur by The Tamilnadu Forest Department. In the year of 1985, the zoo was formally inaugurated. It owns the pride of being the largest zoo in South East Asia. The amazing zoo is sprawled over 1260 acres of area.
A lot of improvements are done in the Vandalur zoo and many strange animals are housed here. The zoo is designed like an open island along with dry and wet moats, hidden walls which simulate the natural environment to the animals. So, they can roam freely. Totally 81 enclosures are in the Vandalur zoo. There is a small Jurassic park built-in that adds to the excitement of children mostly. The education centre, Elephant rides, children’s park are the other delights of Arignar Anna Zoological Park. Since the King cobra cannot withstand the summer heat, it has been enclosed in an air conditioner cage. The zoo cages are well protected. Thatched roofs and fresh river sand on the floor keep the animals cool.
The forest type of the park is mostly dry along with herbs, shrubs, and deciduous species. The visitors could see a few Eucalyptus and cashew trees here.
Photo by bm.iphone
The zoo has been housing over 138 different species out of which 31 Reptile Species, 47 Mammal Species, 5 Species of Amphibians, Birds, 25 species of Fishes and 10 Species of Insects. There are 46 rare and dangerous animals of Western Ghats housed. Animals such as Black Buck, Elephant, Lion, Chimpanzee, Languor, Hippopotamus, Indian Giant Squirrel, Tiger, Toddy Cat, Rhesus Macaque, Zebra, Wolf, Barking Deer, Kangaroo, Bonnet Macaque are the habitats of the park. Out of 63 bird species, the prominent birds are Yellow-wattled Lapwing, Bengal Vulture, Peacock, Little Cormorant, Cockatiel, Grey Heron, Pelican, Openbill Stork. Common Monitor Lizard, Mugger Crocodile, King Cobra, Pythons, Russell’s Viper, Saw Scaled Viper are the reptiles in the zoo. Emu and Cassowary are other exotic species found in the Vandalur zoo.
Other attractions in the zoo are, a Nocturnal animal house, Reptile section, aquarium, Safari Park, Pre-historic Animal Park, Zoo education and interpretation, a walk-through aviary, Prey-Predator enclosures.
Vandalur Zoo Timings:
Vandalur zoo is kept open from 9.00 AM to 5.00 PM except for Tuesdays. The best time to visit the zoo is 9-11 AM and 3-5 PM. Approximately 3-4 hours will take to visit the entire zoo. 10-11.30 AM & 3-4 PM is the Elephant riding timing. Half an hour and one hour time is necessary for Lion and zoo safari. Battery car is available throughout the day.
Vandalur Zoo entrance fee:
The Entrance fee has been recently revised by the Zoo administration. The zoo entrance fee is Rs. 50 for adults and Rs.20 for children. Zoo battery car fee for adults is Rs.100 and Rs. 50 is charged for children. Rs. 50 for adults and Rs.30 for children is levied for Lion safari. Rs.35 & Rs.25 is charged for Camera, Camera phone fee. Rs.150 is taxed as camcorder fee. Vandaloor Zoo entry tickets are available at the zoo entrance.