Two years ago a city wild expert Krishna Tiwari captured Leopards of the Sanjay Gandhi National Park visiting the Mumbai urban areas of Aarey Milk Colony, Goregaon, Borivali, Thane and Mulund region. In his study, most of the Leopards were found in the regions of Thane and Mumbai.
2 years later, The team of National Geographic (Wild Life Photographer Steve Winter and Rihard Coniff) came to Mumbai and installed 20 Infrared Cameras in Mulund to check the movement of these beasts. The team was well aided by RAWW and local forest authorities who could guide them the place and spot where these Indian Leopards exists the most.
The wild cat in Urban Mumbai sitting peacefully is indeed a pleasure to watch. Besides, the way the wildlife enthusiast have snapped the animal is worth a watch
And this is what the Cameras Captured –
Can Human and Leopards Coexist?
Some of the tribes living in the forest areas of Sanjay Gandhi National Park and AArey Milk Colony are living with the Leopards from years now. They now even know how to interact with these wild cats in a peaceful manner. Interestingly, some of these tribes worship Leopards. This is the reason why the can coexist with the animal as they have a certain positivity towards them.
On the contrary, the locals have an indigenous attitude. The moment they see Leopards they start attacking them which in turn instigates the Leopard. The only time Leopards kill humans is when they are provoked or when they mistake humans as another animal.
Leopards are in fact scared of Humans
According to the wild expert Krishna Tiwari, Leopards are scared of humans. However, the only reason they are coming close to the urban settlement because they get to eat their prey in the form of chicken, pigs, dog, cats and rodents which is found close to the human settlements.
So, what are the precautions to Take If You Spot the Leopard in Front of You?
These precautionary measures are shared by the wild expert himself:
- Do not panic if you see a Leopard in front of you because Leopards too will avoid human confrontation. Be calm, do not scream but wait and let the animal leave on its own.
- Be alert if you stay in these leopard spotting areas – Powai, Thane, Mulund, Goregaon, Borivali especially after the sunset as these wild cats are most active in the dark.
- If you have to walk into the dense area in the dark, ensure you have a companion and a torch with you.
- Play Music loudly as Leopards will not mistake you for another animal.
- Leopards never attack anyone bigger than their size so avoid sitting in a crouched position. Know yu know why kids are attacked and killed by Leopards mostly.
- Do not form a crowd around the Leopard as it might frighten the animal and he may injure you or anybody in the crowd in order to escape from the area.
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