A week after a trap was set up at the abandoned Khatau Mill compound, next to Ekta Meadows society in Borivli (East), a female leopard walked into the cage late on Thursday night.
Although the leopard was released at Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) early on Friday, her cubs are still believed to be in the mill compound.
The leopard, which was sighted frequently around the society, led residents to express safety concerns, following which the forest department laid the traps.
“Our forest guards noticed that the trap door was shut and that a leopard had been trapped. Since the officers suspected that more leopards might have been on the prowl, they quickly moved the trap to SGNP. The leopard was released early on Friday morning without any medical tests,” said RK Pole, chief conservator of forests, territorial wing, Thane.
Usually, a microchip is inserted by veterinary officers at SGNP in the tail of trapped leopards before releasing them. However, in an unusual hurry in this case, neither were medical tests carried out nor a microchip inserted.
“We released the leopard in the Tulsi range of SGNP. We are yet to come up with a plan to deal with the cubs if they are still in the abandoned mill compound,” said Anil Toradmal, range forest officer, Thane.
The secretary of Ekta Meadows society was unavailable for comment.