4-year-old lion electrocuted near Mahuva
The Times of India
Yet another lion died an unnatural death on Wednesday when it was electrocuted near Mahuva town of Bhavnagar district.
Sources said the body of the four-year-old male lion was found clinging to a fence on the border of a research farm of Junagadh Agricultural University and the one belonging to Sufiyan Gafar Halani of Vaghnagar village located at a distance of 5km from Mahuva. Forest officials said that they will register a case in the matter once the postmortem report arrives. Sources said that farmers put up electric fences to ward off animals like Neelgai and wild boar that destroy their crops. These fences also claim the lives of lions at times.
In-charge deputy conservator of forest at Bhavnagar division Jivraj Rokad said the carcass of lion was found near the fence wire and the postmortem was conducted at Animal Rescue Centre at Ranigala.
"Primarily we have concluded that the big cat died of electrocution. We have taken viscera samples for forensic examination. We are now investigating the source of electric supply to the wire and who did it,'' Rokad added.
As many as 12 lions have died due to unnatural causes since January 2014 in Bhavnagar, Amreli and Junagadh districts of Saurashtra.
This is the second incident of a lion dying an unnatural death in the Mahuva forest range. Earlier, a female cub of about five months had died after falling into an open well in Mota Pipaliya village. Lions have settled in Mahuva's Ranigala forest area for the last 14 years.
According to the lion census of 2010, there were 411 Asiatic lions in Gir forest and its adjoining areas. In the last five years, 261 lions have died and many of them have met an unnatural end.