At least 12 spotted deer have died of pneumonia at the Sipahijala wildlife sanctuary-cum-zoo in Tripura, officials said Saturday.
A wildlife officer said the deer suffered from a bout of pneumonia as the state was lashed by thunderstorms and intermittent rains during the past week.
"Inadequate sheds and enclosures in the zoo had forced the deer and other animals to remain under the open sky while it was raining heavily. The deaths occurred in the past one week," said Ranjit Das, the zoo's wildlife warden.
The sanctuary, 25 km south of here, is home to about 1,050 animals belonging to 46 different species. An estimated 415 spotted deer reside in the zoo, established in 1972.
"Samples of the dead deer have been sent to the Guwahati Veterinary College for further investigations," the official said.
In September, eight spotted deer had died of pneumonia in the same zoo.