It was a fascinating day at the Pilikula Biological Park King Cobra Captive Breeding Center, where as many as 38 king cobra eggs hatched on Friday.
“The eggs started hatching on July 7 – the 76th day after laying – and continued until Friday,” said H Jayaprakash Bhandary, director of the biological park, officially known as Dr. Shivarama Biological Park. Karanth.
Each king cobra hatchling is about one and a half meters long.
Nagamani – the eight-year-old female king cobra who was rescued and transferred to the park from Sampaje after suffering serious injuries – had laid the eggs after mating with Nagendra, the king cobra born at the captive breeding center of the park in 2010-2011.
The Central Zoo Authority (CZA) had recognized Pilikula as a captive breeding facility in November 2007, and shortly thereafter funds were approved for the construction of a spacious king cobra breeding facility.
“The captive breeding project has been resumed in accordance with the CZA directive. A natural forest has been created within the compound, which simulates conditions similar to the Western Ghats,” Bhandary said.
So far, more than 100 king cobras have been bred at the center. In 2010, three king cobras laid about 100 eggs at the center. While some of the king cobras bred at the center were sent to various zoos around the country as part of the animal exchange program, some were released back into the forest. Currently, five of the 14 king cobras in the center are female, each of them being microchipped to identify them as king cobras.
A team of officials, including senior science officer Jerald Vikram Lobo, veterinarian Dr Madhusdhan K, biologist Suma MS and caretaker Dinesh Kumar KP, would monitor snake breeding at the center.
Pilikula Biological Park closed to visitors
Due to flooding and uprooted trees, Pilikula Biological Park will be closed to the public until Monday. A tree is said to have fallen outside the park’s ostrich enclosure. Deer, sambar deer and barking deer were moved from their usual enclosures due to flooding. Reportedly, some trees inside the park premises are so bent that they could be uprooted and fall at any time.
“Due to the waterlogging of the trail, it has been decided to close the park with the safety of visitors and animals in mind. It is hoped that the water level will drop inside the park with the decrease in rainfall,” said the director of the biological park, H Jayaprakash Bhandary.