The festival of colours, Holi brought good news for Odisha’s Nandankanan Zoo as its Asiatic lioness Bijli gave birth to a cub at about 2.15 a.m. on Friday.
This was confirmed to India Narrative by the Deputy Director of the Zoo, Dr. Sanjeet Kumar. “Till, now Bijli has given birth to only one cub, which is unusual, as they have more.”
The birth took place following 110 days of pregnancy and the cub has been sired by the male lion Samrat.
In July last year, Bijli had given birth to three cubs of whom one was stillborn. Being the first time, she was not able to tend the cubs. While the male cub died after three days, Barsha, the other cub was hand-reared.
Barsha, cub of lioness Bijli who was hand-reared
Last week on March 11, again a Friday, white colour tigress, Rupa, gave birth to one normal colour female cub and two white colour males. Kumar told India Narrative, that all the three are hand-reared as the mother couldn’t tend them.
With this the number of white tigers in the Zoo has gone up to six with the overall tiger population being 29. These include 16 males and 10 females.
Cubs of Rupa tigress being hand-reared