More Wildlife Range Offices And Vets To Tackle Frequent Leopard Attacks

Shakila Ifham

March 13, 2023


Plans are underway to establish new Range Offices and station Veterinary Surgeons in the Wet Zone, particularly targeting Adam’s Peak and Nallathaniya, where leopard attacks are taking place frequently- the Wildlife Conservation Department said yesterday following an attack on a veterinarian by a leopard a few days back.

A Department spokesman said that it was not a serious attack and all officers were covered under a government insurance scheme and the officer would be entitled to relevant compensation for it.

Speaking to journalists, wildlife veterinarian Dr. Malaka Abeywardana considered himself lucky, after he was attacked by an injured leopard.

Abeywardana had been attending to a leopard trapped in a snare inside the Yala National Park, when he was attacked by the animal he was treating.

“We tried to tranquilize the leopard. At once, it broke off the snare and jumped at me. This all took place in a matter of seconds. After attacking me, the leopard ran back in to the jungle,” adding that it was not the first time that he had a brush with death involving a wild animal.

Leopard expert, researcher Rajika Gamage termed the attack as a minor accident.

He also said that only 20 per cent of the leopard deaths reported though some claim that the deadly improvised explosive device hakka pattas is not used as earlier. He believes that when it is used in large scale one witness’s deaths of many wild boars in the up country.