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Mumbai: One more leopard trapped, but the wrong one again

01:11 AM Oct 16, 2021 | Dipti Singh

Mumbai: Another female leopard got trapped in a cage set up in the unit 13 of Aarey milk colony on Friday morning. Forest officials, however, confirmed that the rosette patterns of the big cat did not match with the animal suspected of involved in series of attacks on humans in the area since August 31. So far, two leopards got trapped in the cages set up in Aarey colony in less than a month, however, both are not the one that has been involved in the human-animal conflict since August 31. The first one was a female sub-adult leopard said to be the sibling of the one who was involved in the attacks.

The rosette patterns (these imprints/patterns are unique to each leopard, like human fingerprints) of both female leopards did not match with the one attacking people.

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A forest official at the spot said, “The trapped leopardess isn't the one we are looking for. Hence trapping might lead to trauma to the animal, hence we decided to release her.”

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Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF)–Wildlife Sunil Limaye confirmed, “On Friday morning a female leopard got trapped in one of the trap cages at the Aarey milk colony. The animal that was trapped is not the suspected animal and so we released her in the natural habitat. The efforts to trap the suspected leopard will continue, trap cages are still active."

Recently, a 14-year-old boy identified as Darshan was grievously injured on his head and neck on October 8 in a leopard attack. The incident occurred at unit no.13 of the Aarey milk colony. It was the seventh instance of a leopard attacking humans in the area since August 31. On September 30, a 19-year-old youth, identified as Rajesh Rawat, a resident of Santosh Nagar in Goregaon, became the sixth victim of a leopard attack at Aarey. Earlier, a four-year-old child and an elderly woman were attacked by the big on September 26 and 29 respectively.

Sources from the forest department said the leopard which was trapped on October 1 has still been kept in a cage at the Sanjay Gandhi National Park and the state forest department is mulling over the feasibility of attaching a radio collar to her.

Also Read: Watch video: Another Leopard trapped in Mumbai's Aarey

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