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29.03.2006 General News

Eclipse causes a stir at Accra Zoo


Accra, March 29, GNA - The three types of animal grouping at the Accra Zoo, the diurnal, nocturnal and crepuscular, on Wednesday responded dramatically to the eclipse of the sun in conformity with their environmental physiology to light and sounds.

It was instantaneous and there was spontaneous response from the animal kingdom, Mr Festus Courage Agya-Yao, Acting Manager of the Zoo, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview shortly after the eclipse. "As the diurnal animals, which naturally are active during the day time responded negatively by settling down to sleep, the nocturnal animals which were asleep suddenly bounced back to normal night life activity whiles the crepuscular animals (those that are active at twilight or just before sunrise) showed signs of confusion," he said. The eclipse which brought about sudden changes in light variations caused the stir in the animal kingdom.

As darkness started falling, most of the diurnal animals started hunting for the supper, the nocturnal ones quickly got up and started their normal night activities, which was not normal and as soon as the light came back they settled down again to sleep.

Mr Agya-Yao said there was general calmness at the zoo as the period was so short for the animals to respond appropriately with full normal activity.

On possible impact of the eclipse on the animals, the Acting Manager said "the only possible effect is that it had reduced normal activity period of some animals while it has increased that of others". In a related development Mr Agya-Yao said the state of the zoo was a reflection of natural life situation of nature as human activity throughout the countryside was affecting wildlife.

He said currently the zoo was only exhibiting what the nation could offer in terms of wildlife, but unfortunately the public was not satisfied, as people wanted to see various spices. "Our facilities are too small to hold big game and we lack the capacity to manage them."

He appealed to corporate bodies especially those with animals as their logos to adopt and care for these animals.