Pakyong, 7 February : The forest personnel, assisted by local villagers, successfully rescued a Common Leopard (Panthera Pardus) in Nesur village, located in the Soreng district, on Tuesday night. Nisha Subba, the Divisional Forest Officer (Wildlife) of Soreng, confirmed the incident during a phone conversation with The Voice Of Sikkim.
The leopard had entered the village a few days prior and had been preying on cattle. In response to complaints from villagers, the Forest department swiftly took action, managing to trap the leopard within three hours. DFO Subba stated that the leopard would be released into an undisclosed natural habitat.
This event echoes a similar occurrence in 2023 when locals and foresters successfully rescued another leopard. Sikkim is endowed with abundant biodiversity and serves as a natural habitat for a variety of wild Himalayan creatures, allowing them to thrive in this region.
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The Wildlife Range Soreng, within the Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary under the West Wildlife Division, had been inundated with complaints from residents of various villages in the Soreng District. These complaints ranged from crop raiding to cattle killing, as well as the loss of domesticated dogs and cats to wild animals in recent times. Reports of cattle and pets being taken by a wild animal were particularly common, with Upper Timburbong being a recent hotspot.
In response to these complaints, the staff of the Soreng Wildlife Range installed camera traps at various locations to identify the culprit responsible for the livestock losses. The images captured by the camera traps revealed that an adult Common Leopard (Panthera pardus) was behind the incidents, causing significant losses to local farmers.