The Hatton Magistrates court yesterday (29) ordered the autopsy of the rare Black leopard which died after being rescued to be conducted by the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, of the University of Peradeniya. The corpse of the animal was accordingly transported to Peradeniya from Udawalawa yesterday.
The eight-year-old leopard was rescued by the Department of Wildlife Conservation (DWC) on May 26 after it was found trapped in a hunters snare at the Laxapana estate in Nallathanniya. While it was first claimed he had minor injuries to a leg however the animal passed away in Udawalawe where it was being treated. Environmentalists and Wildlife experts have questioned the death of the seemingly healthy animal.
An autopsy carried out by the DWC claimed the animal had suffered serious injuries to the neck area after being entrapped by the snare. The request to conduct another post mortem by the University of Peradeniya was made by the DWC before courts yesterday (29). The court will also decide on the how-to discard the corpse of the animal, DWC officials said.
Meanwhile, a man suspected of setting up the snare was arrested by the Police and presented before the Hatton Magistrates Court. He has been released on an Rs. 100 000 bail bond. The case will be taken up again on July 29 where a further report will also be submitted to courts.