IMPHAL, Dec 6 - Scientists from the Wildlife Institute of India (WII), who are conducting a probe into the reported killing of a large number of livestock by unknown animals in Manipur, today said that domestic and free-ranging dogs could be responsible for the killings.
The findings of the scientists were conveyed to media persons at a press conference held at the head office of the State Forest Department this evening.
There is evidence that domestic and free-ranging dogs in all areas under investigation are very active in the night hours, said Dr Gopi GV of the WII.
Dr Gopi, accompanied by Aisho Sharma, a research scholar of the WII, has been studying the killings of livestock by installing camera traps at 10 locations in and around Imphal since December 2.
Manipur has been witnessing mysterious killings of livestock by unknown animal(s) for quite some time. Such attacks were reported from Senapati and Churachandpur districts in October and November. Later, the incidents of killings were also reported from Imphal West, Imphal East, Thoubal, Kakching and Kangpokpi districts.
Based on their findings, the WII scientists suggested strengthening of waste management and proper animal husbandry practices, besides controlling stray and owned dogs. They also called for veterinary interventions and monitoring of the wildlife in the region, apart from studying the behaviour of free-ranging dogs.
However, another WII scientist, Salvador Lyngdoh, has expressed the need to continue the probe for some time. Senior officials of the State Forest Department were present in the press conference.