Friday, August 29, 2014

Buffaloes gore lioness to death near Sasan-Gir border

Buffaloes gore lioness to death near Sasan-Gir border
The Times of India

An 11-year-old lioness was gored to death by a buffalo herd and her broken carcass was found by a beat guard who was led to the dead mother by her 18-month-old cub.

Forest officials were surprised by this unprecedented incident which was confirmed by the postmortem report, which pointed out that the lioness had multiple fractures in her ribs and had died of intestinal haemorrhage.

Such occurrences are rare in the wild. It took place at a hill top, some 500-600 metres from Kothariya village, bordering Sasan-Gir, where cattle grazing activity heightens during the monsoon season. "Usually lions die of infighting and natural causes. It is very rare to see the predator being killed by a herd of resilient herbivorous animals," said HS Singh, a lion expert and member of National Board of Wildlife.

On Saturday, Rana Mori, the beat guard, was on his round, when he spotted a cub hidden in the bushes. The strange behaviour of the cub drew Mori's attention. "As I got close to the cub, it started moving away and kept looking back to check if I was following him. After 30-odd metres, I spotted the carcass. I intimated my superiors and the carcass was sent for postmortem," Mori said.

Forest officials said the lioness was called Rupa by villagers and was a loner. Deputy conservator of forest Anshuman Sharma said, "The beat guard drawn to the carcass by the cub risked his life. The lioness had deep injury marks and her ribs were broken. The doctors were of the opinion that the big cat had died of injuries in the attack."

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