Jajpur: In a strange, recurring and clueless phenomenon, the attack on sheep by mysterious creature or animal has returned to haunt the farmers in Odisha.
After a brief season of lull, the first such attack was reported from Barchana area in this district Monday night. Two sheep were found dead with their intestines pulled out. Many more sheep were found with injuries at Barchana.
Locals spotted the carcasses of the sheep at BarchanaTuesday morning. The sheep belonged to farmer Ganeswar Behera.
Behera says that, after grazing the sheep in a forest near the village, he had herded them into a shed near his house at night. The mysterious creature/animal(s) sneaked into the pen and attacked the flock of sheep, killing two and injuring many more.
As was the case in the past, the marauding creatures/ animal(s) consumed the intestines of the sheep. It also drank the blood of the sheep, locals said.
Notably, forest officials have failed to understand the nature of the creature/animal on the prowl in human habitations. They took the stand that the animal was probably a hyena, but locals with better understanding of animal behaviour dismissed this view.
“A hyena cannot attack so many sheep at a time. We suspect it to be some mysterious animal. Even the footprints of the creature are not seen. This makes it more mysterious,” a bewildered Behera said.
This is the first time such an incident was reported from Jajpur.
In 2017, hundreds of sheep were killed in Niali region of Cuttack between February and July. Similar incidents were also reported from Bhanjanagar, Jagatsinghpur, Kalahandi, Nuapada and Kendrapara districts. Despite massive search operations by the forest department, the ‘killer animal(s)’ remained elusive.