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Mumbai rain: Two famished jungle kittens rescued from a dry spot in crematorium in Virar

After animal rescuers failed to unite the kitten with their mother, they were taken to SGNP for preliminary medical examination

mumbai Updated: Sep 22, 2017 00:51 IST
Badri Chatterjee
Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Virar,jungle cats
The two kittens that were rescued.

Two severely dehydrated two-week old jungle kittens were rescued from Bolinj, three kilometres from Virar railway station, during rain on Wednesday.

After animal rescuers failed to unite them with their mother, they were taken to Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) for preliminary medical examination and are being housed at the Thane Society for Prevention and Cruelty to Animals (TSPCA).

Jungle cats are protected under schedule II of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, and are not strictly nocturnal in its habits as many cats as they can hunt during the day as well. The kittens, one weighing 295 grams and the other 310 grams, were identified as jungle cats by Dr Shomita Mukharjee, principal scientist of Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON).

Virar resident Labhesh Vaidya found the two drenched kittens abandoned near a crematorium close to a forest area at 3pm, and carried them home fearing the presence of stray dogs around. “Due to heavy rain, their mother might have found a dry spot at the crematorium and left them behind,” said Vaidya. “They looked malnourished, dehydrated and wet.”

Vaidya informed Resqink Association for Wildlife Welfare (RAWW) who have decided to reunite the kittens with their mother.

“The rescue was crucial as the area was waterlogged. We kept them in a box around 9pm and waited for over five hours for their mother to return. Unfortunately, she did not turn up,” said Sharma, president, RAWW and wildlife warden, Thane.

Early Thursday morning RAWW called off the operation after strays dogs were spotted. “Lack of their mother’s milk led to dehydration and malnourishment. They need food. We told the rescue team about a milk replacer formula,” said Dr Shailesh Pethe, veterinarian, SGNP. Sharma added that kittens have been kept under observation at TSPCA.

First Published: Sep 22, 2017 00:51 IST