Leopard creates havoc in south Kashmir kills 16 sheep and injures 15

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Srinagar, Feb 20 (UNI) Panic gripped a village in Anantnag in south Kashmir after a leopard, who had come down from the forest following heavy snowfall recently, killed 16 sheep injuring 15 others early this morning, official sources said.

They said a leopard entered the cowshed of one Bashir Ahmad Dar at Taspora Gadol village in Kokernag. However, before the villagers could do anything the leopard killed 16 sheep and injured 15 others.

The leopard later escaped back to the forest area, they said adding wild animals have created havoc in the villages adjacent to forests where heaviest snowfall in 20 years was experienced recently.

A musk deer was captured by Jammu and Kashmir police in the outskirts of the city early last week and handed over to wildlife authorities at Dachigam.

Official sources said more than two dozen people were killed and about 40 wounded by wild animals in the Kashmir valley during the past one year.

In retaliation, people also killed four wild animals in the valley during the same period.

After unprecedented snowfall, people living in upper reaches in the Kashmir valley are now facing a threat from wild animals who had come down from the woods in search of food.

The Wildlife Department has directed people living in villages adjacent to forests to remain cautious against the movement of wild animals who have now turned towards plains in the wake of heavy snowfall on upper reaches.

Reports of attacks on villagers by wild animals during the past fortnight have been received from different areas in north and south Kashmir.

In retaliation, villagers also killed four wild animals in the Valley during the period. A number of animal loving organisations protested against these killings. However, Villagers said the wild animals killed and injured people, including women and small children.

UNI BAS LS KP1325

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