Battambang provincial authorities on Wednesday said that the wild animal that mauled a cow in Kampong Lpov commune’s Stung Touch village on Tuesday night was a bear, and not a tiger as originally thought.
Provincial Department of Environment director Kort Boran told The Poston Wednesday that the animal’s walking pattern revealed that it was a bear.
He said that the two animals have distinct behavioural patterns, with a tiger likely to bite underneath the neck, while bears generally attack and bite the nape of the neck.
Another irrefutable piece of evidence, he said, was the paw print – with a bear’s paws bigger than those of tigers. A tiger’s paw print is similar to a dog’s, but larger. A bear’s paw print is flatter, similar to that of a monkey.
He added that he did not believe there were any tigers living in the nearby forest, while there are plenty of bears.
Kampong Lpov commune deputy police chief Chea Sophal disagreed with Boran’s claims.
He said his police officials and village security guards inspected the scene where the attack occurred early on Tuesday and concluded that the cow was indeed attacked by a tiger.
He added that the cow did not struggle, also pointing to a large print on the ground which Sophal claims a tiger left when it bit the cow’s neck and threw it to the ground with force.
“Villagers and I know the species of tiger because tigers cross the village to go to a [nearby] mountain. A tiger is the size of a horse and can break a cow’s neck. A bear could not toss a cow down to the ground and bears rarely come to the village,” Sophal said.