A THIRSTY cheetah at Zoo Negara drank from a water can as cameras clicked away.
The fastest land animal is among nearly 4,000 animals being cared for at the zoo in Hulu Kelang, Selangor.
Like other wildlife in the sanctuary, the cheetah was feeling the heat thanks to the current heatwave which is expected to last until September.
Zoo Negara vice-president Rosly@Rahmat Ahmat Lana said extra water was given to the animals these days.
“Zookeepers regularly change the water for cleanliness’ sake. This is done during the morning routine,” he told StarMetro.
“We also have veterinarians checking on the animals,” Rosly said, adding that so far, the animals were doing well and none had fallen sick due to the heatwave.
“Animals kept inside vivariums are unaffected but we are keeping an eye on those in open-air enclosures
“We have planted more trees as shelter inside the enclosures.”
The Bentong Farm in Bentong, Pahang, has installed eight industrial fans (HVLS), costing RM20,000 each, in outdoor areas to provide cool air for animals and visitors.
The petting zoo is home to 100 species and has 1,000 animals.
The farm also gives fruits with high water content such as apples and papayas twice a day to animals under its care.
Like Zoo Negara, it also ensures that the animals have enough water to battle the heat.
Park manager Y. Rajagopal said the water, sourced from nearby hills, was cooler than piped water.
“We also provide mats and hay for the animals to walk and sleep on,” he said.
“This helps minimise their contact with the hot ground.
“As for our tortoises and birds, there is sand around their habitat for them to rest and cool off.”
The park also recently groomed alpacas, Shetland ponies and Pygmy donkeys to help them keep cool.