Drowning leopardess saved by forest dept, Wildlife SOS

ST CORRESPONDENT
Thursday, 3 January 2019

As per information given by officials to the Wildlife SOS, the leopardess had a narrow brush with death after falling into a 50-foot-deep well in Pimpalgaon Rotha village in Parner range of the State

PUNE: In a successful rescue operation, a 7-year-old female leopard was saved from drowning in a well by officials of Wildlife SOS and Parner Forest Department on Monday morning in Parner. 

As per information given by officials to the Wildlife SOS, the leopardess had a narrow brush with death after falling into a 50-foot-deep well in Pimpalgaon Rotha village in Parner range of the State. At around 9 am, residents of the village were startled by the panicked roars, echoing from deep within the open well. The alert villagers immediately alerted the forest department who in turn called Wildlife SOS team that manages the Manikdoh Leopard Rescue Centre in Junnar.

A four-people team was immediately dispatched to the location. While the Wildlife SOS team drove nearly 80 kilometres to reach the location, a team of forest officers rushed to the village to assess the situation. With the help of the villagers, they lowered a platform into the well so that the terrified leopardess could clamber onto the makeshift platform for temporary support. 

Once the Wildlife SOS team arrived at the scene, a trap cage was lowered into the well and its open door was angled towards the animal. The leopardess jumped into the cage and was quickly lifted out of the well. Meanwhile, the Forest Department managed the huge crowd of curious onlookers, to prevent any unnecessary panic or resultant mishaps.

Dr Ajay Deshmukh, Senior Veterinarian at the Manikdoh Leopard Rescue Centre, said, “The leopardess was in a state of panic and had to be rescued immediately. After conducting a thorough physical examination, we concluded that the leopardess was healthy and fit for release in the wild.”

Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-founder and CEO of Wildlife SOS said, “The chief concern of the Wildlife SOS team centres around the well-being of the animal and their safe return to the natural habitat. The entire exercise had to be quickly executed with painstaking care. Existing on the periphery of human settlements, there is a need to initiate and implement ways for mutual coexistence for humans and animals and stay vigilant to reduce such conflict-related issues.”

Manisha Bhinge, Range Forest Officer, Parner range, said, “We always approach Wildlife SOS team for any leopard rescue matters, and this time too, this dangerous operation was only possible because of the timely assistance and help from their team.”

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