Amid RBT scare, leopard fear stalks villagers

The big cat is frequently straying into villages near Sunabeda sanctuary since last one week

Published: 24th March 2023 10:16 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th March 2023 10:16 AM   |  A+A-


Image used for representational purpose only.

By Express News Service

NUAPADA:  Amid the panic over a suspected Royal Bengal Tiger (RBT) lurking near Soseng gram panchayat within Sunabeda wildlife sanctuary, a leopard has made its presence felt in nearby Powertala and Taria Mahubhata villages, striking fear in the hearts of locals.

The half-eaten carcass of a calf, which was killed by the leopard on Wednesday night, was found between Amanara and Moharadihi villages, around 2 km from Powertala on Thursday. Sources said the leopard has been frequently straying into Powertala and Taria Mahubhata villages under Amanara panchayat near the sanctuary since the last one week.

Forester of Nuapada Territorial Range Chudanath Saraf said villagers spotted the calf’s carcass in the morning when they were collecting mahua flowers. “During investigation, we found pug marks of a leopard near the spot. The eating pattern also confirms it to be a leopard,” he added.

Reportedly, a female leopard along with two cubs is taking shelter inside a cave in the forest near Amanara panchayat. To feed its cubs, the leopard is undertaking hunting missions and frequently straying into human habitations. In the last around 20 days, the big cat has killed at least five cattle in the area. 
Though the Forest department has installed trap cameras at several places near the two villages, the leopard’s movement is yet to be captured as it is changing its route.

On the other hand, panic continues to grip villagers of Jalmadei village under Soseng panchayat because of a suspected RBT which is prowling in the area. The large cat reportedly killed a 65-year-old woman of the village on Sunday Night and the next day, preyed on a calf. Though the Forest department has refuted the claims of the big cat being an RBT, it is yet to identify the animal.


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