With a camera fixed inside the Valparai dump yard capturing a straying leopard recently, Forest Department officials and environment activists are concerned about the improper handling of solid waste in the hill town in Coimbatore.
In the past, the Forest Department had urged the Valparai Municipality to take steps to keep the town clean so as to not invite straying wild animals.
Images captured on camera traps suggest that the leopard has come close to the dump yard, meat shops and open garbage bins and other places frequented by stray dogs attracted by the latter’s smell. The Forest Department and a NGO Nature Conservation Foundation (NCF) had fixed four cameras to monitor the movements of the leopard.
Rapid camera trap surveys in Valparai town have shown that leopards are using these areas without causing threat to human life. Accidental incidents of human injuries or fatalities by the leopards could be avoided with due precautions.
“The dumping yards need proper disposal mechanisms. The Municipality has to implement this immediately,” said a wild life researcher.