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Orissa zoo celebrates tiger cubs’ birthday


Bhubanesar: The Nandankanan zoo in Orissa Tuesday celebrated the birthday of its two tiger cubs with the cutting of a cake, and serving them a special chicken diet, zoo officials said.

Around 60 school children and hundreds of tourists participated in the celebration of the first birthday of Khusi and Payal who were born to nine-year-old tigress Kushum in the zoo Oct 20 last year.

“The cubs were released with their mother to a specially decorated enclosure so that visitors can have free look from outside,” zoo’s deputy director Shiva Narayan Mahapatra told IANS.

The zoo authorities had put a happy birthday banner in front of the specially renovated enclosure. It was also decorated with flowers, and balloons.

“The children cut the cake and ate it and sang the birthday song. The tiger cubs were served with fresh soft broiler meat,” Mahapatra said.

“When the cubs were first released to the enclosure, they appeared happy and along with their mother, were in a playful mood,” he said.

The Nandankanan zoo, located on the outskirts of state capital Bhubaneswar, houses nine white tigers and 15 others.

Nandankanan zoo, which got its name from Nandan Van, the Garden of God, is spread over 425 hectares. It houses over 1,200 animals and offers a first-of-its-kind white tiger safari.