A leopard, which had created fear among the residents of Shivapura, Hundipura and surrounding areas in Gundlupet taluk for the last three months, was captured on Tuesday night and released into the forests on Wednesday.

The male leopard, aged around five, was captured around midnight and released in the forests at Mavinahalla in the Moolehole range, Kantharaj, Director of the Bandipur Tiger Reserve, told The Hindu .

The leopard had killed and eaten some dogs and injured a few heads of cattle in the villages in the last three months, he said. The leopard’s presence came to light after village residents complained about their dogs going missing.

Nataraj, Gundlupet Range Forest Officer, said the animal used to hide in a huge concrete pipe, which was closed at one end, during the day and go out on the prowl in the nights. Earlier attempts to capture the animal had gone in vain.

Following specific information from local people on Tuesday, officials and staff of the Department of Forests swung into action. A cage was brought in to trap the animal and placed close to the spot where it was sighted, Mr. Nataraj said. The leopard did not move out till late night owing to disturbances around as a large number of anxious people had gathered. Finally, it walked into the cage, which did not have any bait, he added.