Times of India: APRIL 26, 2002
According to reports here on Wednesday, an adult lion was found dead near the Paniya sanctuary in the western Gir region while a lion cub was found dead in the Jamwala range. Also, a leopard was reportedly killed by a pride of lions near the Sasan railway station.
The forest department sources told TNN that the adult lion in the Paniya sanctuary could have died due to old age. It was already 19 years of age. But the attack on the leopard perhaps might be due to lack of food for lions in the Gir sanctuary.
Experts in wildlife say that it is very unusual a pride of lions attacking a leopard, which is considered to be very agile and clever. A leopard could rarely fall into a
trap laid by lions.
With the growing shortage of food for these wild animals, attacks on their own breeds have become a common site, say forest department officials. Due to the present heat wave in the Gir jungle, most of the wild animals prefer to take shelter in the shade and move out only during the dusk and dawn.
As a result, the frequency to 'kill' its preys is reduced thereby leading to shortage of food for these wild animals. These animals also have to move long distances in search of water in the jungle. However, the shortage of food for the wild animals was causing concern to the forest department.