Lioness that ‘attacked’ cattle herder in Gir 3 days ago found dead

A camera trap records the presence of two Asiatic lions who continued to camp on the border of Vinchhiya taluka in Rajkot district and Chotila taluka of Surendranagar district, for the third consecutive day on Tuesday. (Courtesy: Gujarat Forest Department)

THE ASIATIC lioness suspected to have attacked a maldhari (cattle herder) near Dodhi ness in Hadala range in Gir (east) forest division three days ago, was found dead in the same area on Sunday. However, forest officers said that prima facie, nothing suspicious about the death was observed.

Dushyant Vasavada, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh Wildlife Circle, said that the lioness believed to the nine to 12 years old, was found dead in Bhimchas beat in Jasdhar range during a joint patrolling exercise by the staff of Hadala and Jasdhar ranges in Gir (east).

Vasavada said that the Assistant Conservator of Forests of that area, as well as range forest officers of Hadala and Jasadhar inspected the carcass of the lioness and observed nothing suspicious.

The CCF said that prima facie, the lioness found dead on Sunday was the same that attacked and injured a maldhari near Dodhi ness (a maldhari settlement) on Sunday. However, he ruled out any suggestions that the death of the lioness was directly related to the incident of Sunday. “Nothing has been observed which could indicate it being an unnatural death,” Vasavada told The Indian Express

The CCF added that while conducting a post-mortem, veterinarians collected samples of the carcass of the lioness to do forensic analysis for ascertaining the exact cause of the animal’s death.