A leopard was trapped in a cage in Niphad taluka, the third big cat to be caught in the area this month and weeks after a four-year-old boy was killed by a wild animal there, a Forest Department official said on Saturday. The leopard was trapped in early hours of Friday in a cage put up by Forest Department in a sugarcane field in Godanagar locality of Saikheda village, B R Dhakare, Range Forest Officer, said.
The wild animal’s capture has brought relief for local villagers, who had been living in fear of attack on them or their cattle. The villagers noticed the trapped leopard and immediately informed the Forest Department personnel, who came to the spot and took the animal away, Dhakare said.
On September 23, a four-year-old boy, Sarthak Solse, was killed by a leopard in an agriculture field near Saikheda. Two leopards were trapped in Darna Shingve village in Niphad taluka early this month.
The taluka in this North Maharashtra district is a sugarcane belt where leopards hide in dense fields after sneaking from nearby forests and generally prey on dogs or cattle.
In the last one-and-a-half year, 14 leopards have been trapped in Niphad taluka, the forest official added.