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Zoos suffer in hot weather

[ 2010-07-06 15:44]     字号 [] [] []  
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A red deer died at a zoo in Hunan's provincial capital Changsha due to a lack of water during the heat wave on Sunday afternoon.

"The red deer drinks a lot of water every day and also needs water sprayed inside its enclosure to stay cool," Changsha Ecological Zoo official Zheng Chuang said on Monday.

"But the city's water demand has been too high because of the scorching weather, so there wasn't enough pressure to pipe water to the zoo."

The zoo is located at a higher altitude than the surrounding area in the southern suburb of the city, which places it at the end of the water system, Zheng explained.

"It has been around 40 C for days, creating so much water demand that units at the water system's far edges face shortages."

Zheng and his colleagues are transporting water in trucks from nearby locations.

The high temperatures, which the National Meteorological Center expects to continue through tomorrow, have been costly for zoos nationwide.

Nanchang Zoo's office management chief Zhu Miao was quoted by Jiangxi Daily as saying the zoo's electricity bill this month increased threefold to 90,000 yuan ($13,240).

Beijing Zoo invested more than 1 million yuan this summer to help its zoo animals stay cool, zoo publicity officer Ye Mingxia told China Daily.

"Every day, the animals consume about 400 kg of ice cubes and more than 500 kg of fresh fruit and vegetables - twice the usual amount," Ye said. "The reward for our keepers is that none of the animals have suffered from heat stroke."

Ye said the zoo's feeders had scientifically developed a special diet for animals, including a lot of juicy greens, such as watermelons and cucumbers. It has also added salt to animal's drinking water to replace essential trace elements.

As the temperature in Central China's Hubei province has hovered around 35 C for days, Wuhan Zoo's staff took active measures to keep the animals cool.

"Giant pandas stay in airconditioned rooms with a water pool outside, while gorillas enjoy electric fans in their habitats and zebras stay in the shade of a net," a worker who refused to be named said.

Shanghai Wild Animal Park in suburban Nanhai district has installed air-conditioners for the 10 Expo pandas.

The park's two panda exhibition halls each have six air-conditioners, which keep the enclosures between 20 C and 25 C, staff member Su Feilong said.


1. What animal died at the Changsha zoo due to hot weather?

2. How many ice cubes are consumed by the animals a day?

3. What has been the temperature for the past few days?


1. Red deer.

2. 400 Kg.

3. 40 C.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Zoos suffer in hot weather

Zoos suffer in hot weather

Todd Balazovic is a reporter for the Metro Section of China Daily. Born in Mineapolis Minnesota in the US, he graduated from Central Michigan University and has worked for the China daily for one year.