A man-eating leopard has claimed more than one dozen villagers in India, and is thought to target those who return home after drinking heavily.
The jungle cat has spread its reign throughout the Didihat region of the Kumoan hills in Himalayan India during the past two and a half years. Although multiple attempts have been made to shoot and kill the leopard, the so-called man-eating creature has yet to be defeated.
"This month we had sent a team of shooters in the affected village, but they were unsuccessful in their mission,” Pithoragarh’s forest officer YK Singh said. “This is the third attempt made so far."
The leopard began its killing spree in January of 2012, when it attacked a 46-year-old man from the Simar village and five others after that. In 2013, the cat killed five additional villagers. The latest victims, one a 44-year-old, were killed on August 1.
"Villagers are terrorized by the wild animal and it’s almost impossible to venture out after dark,” Madan Paneru, who lives in Kotali village, said. “Moving from one village to another or to markets through forested areas becomes difficult.”
It’s believed that the animal is between 10 and 12 years old and has developed a taste for human flesh, since its preferred diet of dogs is difficult to find in the area. Because of its peculiar tastes, villagers now walk home before sunset and carry sticks in order to ward off the hungry predator.
Photo Sources: Wikipedia, PBS.org