“There is a Leopard on a tree” – the call from a friend made me pack my camera bags and drive approximately 75 kms in a hurry. Throughout the journey, I hoped that the leopard would still be on the tree, and fortunately, it was.
We regularly come across stories of human-leopard conflict from this region (South Gujarat – outskirts of Vansda National Park & Poorna Sanctuary). Just four days earlier, a girl was attacked by a leopard in the area. The leopard I drove all the way to see had climbed the tree at around 1 p.m after it was chased by a few stray dogs. Villagers noticed it and soon a huge crowd gathered to see it. Luckily forest officials and local police reached the place, controlled the crowd and ensured that no one threw stones or disturbed the leopard in any way. It was there till around 8 p.m and then vanished in the dark.
Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'
If sensibly managed, most instances of man-animal encounters can be benign. In this instance, Forest and Police officials did a good job of controlling the crowd, says the photographer.