The severed head of an
endangered fishing cat was found near a canal in West Bengal's Howrah district, forest officials said on Saturday.
The incident comes after two fishing cats, the state animal, were killed over tiger scare in separate incidents in neighbouring Hooghly district in January.
Upon receiving information that a fishing cat has been killed in Nakol village in Shyampur block, forest officials launched a search on Friday for the corpse but found only the animal's severed head near the canal that links to the Rupnarayan river, Uluberia forest range officer Utpal Sarkar said.
During preliminary probe, it was found that the fishing cat was electrocuted to death after coming in contact with live wires that were put up around a pond in the village to prevent stealing of fishes, Sarkar said.
The severed head has been sent for post-mortem and a search is on for the owner of the pond, he added.
Several residents of Narendrapur village in Jagatballavpur police station area in the district were sentenced to five years imprisonment in 2015 for killing and eating a fishing cat.
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