The animal is looking weak as it has not taken proper food

The leopard that was trapped at the Kavulpalayam hills about four km from Perambalur town was tranquilised and taken to the Sathymangalam Tiger Reserve on Tuesday.

A team of veterinary specialists led by N. S. Manoharan, Forest Veterinary Officer, Coimbatore, visited the Kavulpalayam hill, where the leopard was trapped in a cage in the early hours of Monday.

Dr. Manoharan inspected the animal, a male sub-adult, which was looking weak as it had not taken proper food since it was trapped in the cage, specially brought from Pollachi. The forest personnel tried to feed the leopard with beef, chicken etc, but it refused to eat.

District Collector Darez Ahamed and District Forest Officer G. Vadivel held discussions with Dr. Manoharan on the modalities to be adopted for transporting the animal to Sathyamangalam reserve forests. The senior forest officials too were consulted over phone.

The animal was tranquilised and was transported to Sathyamangalam under tight security.

“We mildly sedated the leopard to enable us to transport it safely to Sathyamangalam”, Dr. Manoharan told The Hindu.

Earlier, Dr. Ahamed and Dr. Manoharan visited deep inside the forests atop the hill to inspect the route frequented by the wild animal and also the caves where it was said to have taken shelter.

The forest personnel were camping at a safe place atop the hill ever since the leopard was trapped in the cage to have a close watch of its behaviour.

The forest personnel spotted two different sets of footprints – one big and another small– indicating the presence of wild animals. One leopard has been trapped. To attract the other animal, meat, beef etc were placed in the areas near the cage. However, no animal visited the area last night.

Mr. Vadivel said since two sets of footprints had been spotted in the villages abutting the Kavulpalayam forests, the specially designed cage will be brought back to Perambalur from Pollachi after the trapped leopard was released into the reserve forests. It will be placed atop the Kavulpalayam hill again to trap the second wild animal too, he added.

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