A leopard left her three cubs in an abandoned building at Silpata village near here, sparking panic among local residents.
The cubs were first spotted by Geeta Devi, a local resident who stores fodder for her livestock in the building, when she went to bring the feed on Monday morning, Range Officer (Pithoragarh Forest Division) Dinesh Joshi said.
Suspecting the leopardess to be hiding nearby, she ran out of the building and informed the villagers, who called a Forest department team.
The abandoned building where the cubs were born is situated near Silpata Van panchayat, the officer said.
“As the building has long been abandoned, the leopardess might have found it safe to deliver the cubs there,” said Joshi.
“It is the second such incident in recent years in which a leopardess gave birth near a populated area. In 2017, another leopardess delivered three cubs near our range office,” he said.
The forest officer said the building has been cordoned off and is being watched constantly to save the villagers from a sudden attack by the leopardess, who might revisit her cubs.
“The cat family has a natural tendency to shift its cubs from one place to another to keep them safe. We are waiting for the leopardess to return to her cubs,” said Joshi.
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