A leopard census is underway in Gujarat’s Dang after nearly eight years using modern equipment, an official said, adding that 80 teams have been deployed in the forest areas of the district to carry out the job.
The official said that the last census was conducted in 2016 in which the total number of leopards, who are also among the major ‘big cats’ in the world, was found to be 43 and is now expected to have increased after nearly eight years.
Dinesh Rabari, District Forest Officer (DFO) told ANI on Saturday that cameras have been installed in the forest to keep track of the possible movements of the leopards.
“The last census was done in 2016. Cameras traps have been installed everywhere. The number of leopards in Dang is quite high. In 2016 there were a total of 43 leopards… now it is expected to increase. Since last week, 80 teams have been deployed,” Rabari said.
“From 5 pm to 6 am, teams are being deployed and arranged wherever there is a possibility of leopard movements,” he added.
In April this year, Union Minister Bhupender Yadav said conserving big cats and their habitats can secure some of the most important natural ecosystems on Earth leading to natural climate change adaptation, water, and food security for millions of people, and provide livelihood and sustenance to forest communities.
Earlier this year, in the mega international event held at Mysuru, Karnataka, to commemorate 50 years of Project Tiger, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the International Big Cat Alliance (IBCA) for the conservation of seven big cats namely Tiger, Lion, Leopard, Snow Leopard, Cheetah, Jaguar and Puma.
Leopard is among the seven major big cats of the world.