Pune: Three leopard cubs rescued, reunited with their mother

Identified as two males and one female, the cubs were estimated to be about 15 days old.

In a successful rescue effort by Wildlife SOS and the Maharashtra Forest Department, three leopard cubs were safely reunited with their mother in Vadgaon Sahani village in Junnar taluka of Pune district.

While harvesting their sugarcane crop, local farmers stumbled upon three cubs huddled together amidst the tall, dense fields in Vadgaon Sahani village earlier this week.

Accustomed to catching occasional glimpses of leopards around the area, the farmers immediately reported the incident to the Forest department. The leopard cubs were brought to the Wildlife SOS Leopard Rescue Centre for a brief medical examination.

Identified as two males and one female, the cubs were estimated to be about 15 days old.

Wildlife SOS Veterinary doctor, Dr Nikhil Bangar, checked them for ticks and injuries, and found the young leopards to be in good health. The initial attempt to reunite the lost cubs with their mother by Wildlife SOS and the Forest department was unsuccessful, but the team was not ready to give up just yet.

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They placed the cubs in a safe box and returned to the field on Monday night, hoping that the mother would be able to find them. After a long night of waiting, the mother leopard was seen slowly approaching the field at dawn. Relieved to be reunited with her cubs, the leopard quickly knocked over the box and took its cubs away to a safer location.

Range Forest Officer Yogesh Ghodke said, “Junnar region has a significant leopard population and due to rapid loss of forest cover, these animals have found safe cover in the dense sugarcane fields. During the sugarcane harvesting season, we see an increase in the number of encounters with leopard cubs.”

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