April 6, 2021 12:21:01 am
A leopard that had fallen into a 40-feet-deep well was saved from drowning in a two-hour-long rescue operation conducted by Wildlife SOS and the Maharashtra Forest department. The incident took place at Vadgaon Kandali in Junnar at Pune district on Monday.
The big cat’s distressed cries caught the attention of the villagers, who immediately reached out to the Forest department.
A four-member rescue team operating out of Wildlife SOS run Leopard Rescue Centre in Junnar was also dispatched to the location to assist the forest officers. The rescuers lowered a trap cage into the well and the leopard, on sensing, that this was its only chance out, carefully climbed into it. After being lifted out of the well, the leopard was transferred to the Leopard Rescue Centre for medical examination.
Dr Nikhil Bangar, wildlife veterinary officer of Wildlife SOS, said, “While the leopard was struggling to claw its way out of the well, it sustained minor abrasions in the nail region. We will keep the leopard under close observation while it recuperates from this stressful ordeal.”
Kartick Satyanarayan, CEO of Wildlife SOS, said, “The entire exercise had to be executed quickly and with painstaking care. We are grateful to the Forest department for making this rescue a success. The startling increasing rate of habitat encroachment has resulted in decreasing prey base, territory and water sources for predator species like leopards, which are then forced to come out into human habitation. Since these elusive cats usually prefer to move around at night, it is common for them to fall victim to uncovered wells.”
Regional Forest Officer Yogesh Ghodke said, “We suspect that the leopard had fallen into the well at night while on the prowl for food. The leopard is currently under temporary observation at the Wildlife SOS centre.”
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