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March 14, 2010

Wildlife officials nab leopard in Haryana village

     Yamunanagar: Wildlife officials in Haryana on Saturday manage to capture a wayward leopard after it strayed into a village here. The news of a leopard having entering the village drew hundreds of villagers at the spot as everyone was curious to have a look of the animal, which had hidden itself in the bushes. The officials tranquillised the leopard and kept it in a cage lest it could harm or get harmed by the villagers. Officials, however, said that they had to face a lot of difficulty in capturing the leopard. "We got the bushes cut. After the bushes were cut, when we tried to inject, it (leopard) suddenly jumped down, then we had to call JCB (a machine used for clearing waste), once JCB cleaned up the bushes, the leopard ran further. Finally we caught it with the help of JCB, injected it and put it in the cage." said Sultan Singh, a forest official. With their natural habitat depleting sharply, leopards often find their way into villages on the edges of forests, where they are either captured or killed. In 1997, India had an estimated 7,300 leopards in the wild but conservationists say the number is now likely to be much lower than this figure.
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