Two cats in city keep Forest teams on tenterhooks

Forest officials and police trying to capture a leopard that strayed into the city and escaped into a private farmhouse at Mailardevpally on Thursday.  

Civet cat rescued, shifted to zoo; leopard escapes into a farm on city outskirts

A leopard which has absconded into a farm after being sighted at Katedan here on Thursday, is keeping the Forest officials and police on tenterhooks.It is one among the two incidents of wild cat sightings in the city successively on Wednesday and Thursday.In the first instance, a civet cat (Asian palm civet) was spotted on the ramparts of Noorani Masjid near Fateh Darwaza of Golconda Fort late on Wednesday. Rumours of a black panther sighting immediately caught up, keeping the residents nearby awake the whole night. Much to their relief, the animal was rescued early on Thursday by a Forest team, and shifted to the Nehru Zoological Park.Close on the heels of the rescue came news about sighting of a leopard on the road near the Katedan underpass, in the peripheries of Mylardevpally. The feline was reportedly found sitting on the road for close to an hour-and-a-half, before the police and Forest teams began rescue operations.It was reported that a person who went too close to the animal was attacked and received mild injuries. Pursued by rescue teams, the animal later escaped into a 40-acre farm on the Shamshabad route. Police and Forest department officials, together with rescue teams from Nehru Zoological Park, secured the area and are attempting to capture the big cat when reports last came in.As per information from the Forest department, two trap cages and nets have been set up inside the farm, along with 25 CC camera traps. Three special teams under the FDO, Shamshabad will keep night vigil at the farm, supported by police force under ACP. Rescue team from the zoo consisting of veterinarians equipped with tranquilliser guns have been stationed at the spot.Attempts to get images of the feline using drone cameras failed, and officials are not ruling out the possibilities of the animal jumping over the compound wall in its attempts to escape in the dead of the night.An alert has been issued to the people residing in the surrounding areas, asking them to be careful and report any sighting of the animal or commotion to the police. Officials surmise that the leopard might have strayed from the forests of Gaganpahad or Amangal in search of prey or water.

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