Updated: May 14, 2020 8:52:51 pm
Two felines were spotted in Hyderabad on Thursday morning, sending shockwaves among residents. While a civet cat — initially thought to be a panther — was spotted at Fateh Darwaza of Golconda fort, a leopard was found resting beside a median on an underpass near Katedan in Rajendranagar.
The animal rescue team of the Nehru Zoological Park captured the black cat and clarified it was an Asian Palm Civet. The animal was shifted to the Park and its health is said to be stable. The civet cat was seen roaming on the terrace of houses in the locality.
Not black panther, but a civet cat, clarifies forest dept after sighting of the black cat spread panic in Golconda area last night. It has been rescued and shifted to the Nehru Zoo park. @IndianExpress pic.twitter.com/eCKnEHqpui
— Rahul V Pisharody (@rahulvpisharody) May 14, 2020
Meanwhile, hunt is underway for the leopard, which fled the underpass after crowds swelled around it on NH-7 and entered a farmland near Budvel railway station. A rescue team, led by Dr MA Hakeem, deputy director (Vet), Nehru Zoological Park, has placed cameras and trap cages near the site.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, Dr Hakeem said the search for the leopard is progressing and will run into the night. “The leopard appears very active and fast, which rules out the possibilities of a major injury. However, the police report says it could have sustained minor wounds. We are still searching for the leopard and one team will remain stationed here for the night,” said Dr Hakeem.
The local police had used drone cameras for a better view of the farmland, but could not trace the big cat. “It is a very thick and bushy area. Though it is around 50 acres of land, the compound wall is only 4-5 ft tall. The leopard could have escape easily,” he added.
Among the steps taken to trace the find the leopard are: Two trap cages and nets established; 25 CC camera traps arranged; three special teams under FDO Shamshabad to be supported by the police; a rescue team from Zoo Park stationed at the spot. People in nearby areas have been asked to remain careful and report any animal movement.
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In the ongoing coronavirus lockdown, forest department personnel have so far rescued at least three leopards from Shadnagar, Nalgonda and Nampally areas. A sloth bear was rescued from an agricultural field in Thorrur village of Mahabubabad district a few days ago and released in the wild. Similarly, a six-foot crocodile was rescued from an agricultural field in Srirangapur village in Wanaparthy district and later released in the Priyadarshini Jurala Project.
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