Thursday, 14 August 2014

India lion cub leads guard to its mother's corpse

12 August 2014 Last updated at 11:57

By Geeta Pandey
BBC News, Delhi

A lion cub has led forest rangers to its mother's corpse in an Indian sanctuary, an act described by officials as very unusual behaviour.

A forest guard, who saw the cub hiding in the bushes, followed it and went on to discover the body on a nearby hill.

The cub then guarded his mother until the ranger returned with forest and police officials to remove the carcass.

A post-mortem suggests the lioness died in a fight with other animals, possibly a herd of water buffalo.

Deputy Conservator of Forests in Gir, Anshuman Sharma, said the cub's behaviour was "rare" and "very peculiar" - something he had not encountered in his many years of watching lions.

Gir in Gujarat state is home to Asiatic lions and, according to the last census done in 2010, there are 411 lions in the sanctuary.

"On Saturday afternoon, I was patrolling the Tulsi-Shyam range of the sanctuary when I saw a cub hiding in the bushes," forest guard Rana Mori told the BBC.

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