Due to the outbreak of novel Coronavirus and countries imposing mandatory shutdown, many photos and videos of different animals being spotted in public places all over the globe have surfaced online. And many environmentalists are now of the opinion that "Nature is sending us a message" with these animals invading areas that are predominantly occupied by human beings.
Now, a video of an endangered animal walking through an empty road in the south Indian state of Kerala has surfaced online. In the 13-second clip, a Malabar large-spotted civet with black spots and stripes, which is normally active at night, is seen walking royally through a road in Meppayur town in Kozhikode (Calicut), Kerala, while some cops were on duty.
Malabar large-spotted civet in Kerala
The Malabar civet is a viverrid endemic to the Western Ghats of India. It has been classified by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as Critically Endangered as it's entire population is estimated to be less than 250 mature individuals. It is also understood that this animal was last spotted in 1990.
"Now it's turn of the Malabar large spotted civet on the road. Critically endangered with fewer than 250 matured individuals. Endemic to western ghats, not seen since 1990 surfaced at Kozhikode( sometimes known by its anglicised version, Calicut) during present lockdown," tweeted Sudanta Nanda IFS.
Is this video real or fake?
Meanwhile, a few netizens are of the opinion that it would be a fake video due to the animal's strange walking style. However, Indian Forest Service official Parveen Kaswan has confirmed that it is not fake and suggested that the civet seen in the video might be sick. He also added that since these animals are nocturnal, there is a possibility that it is having a tough time walking in broad daylight.
"I Shared this earlier also. But Sharing again after confirming it once again. Some said it is 3D or he is walking strange. It is not 3D. Confirmed it. Also possible that it is sick. But they are nocturnal so finding difficult to walk in broad day. So sticking to black & white," he tweeted.
Also, another video of the same animal wandering through this place has also surfaced online. In the 38-second clip, people speaking in Kerala's native language Malayalam are heard talking to each other if it is Asian palm civet or Indian pangolin. "Haven't seen this animal in this area. Is it looking for water?" people are also heard asking in the video. Watch the video here.
Other animals spotted on public places
Recently, there were multiple reports on swans, dolphins returning to Venetian canals and a group of elephants relaxing in a village in Yunnan, China surfaced online. Photos of two elephants passing out in a tea garden, apparently after drinking corn wine, also went viral on social media. However, they were later proved not related to the Coronavirus lockdown.
On the other hand, in Japan, hundreds of deer that are local to Nara Park were spotted wandering through the streets in search of food as there are no visitors for the past few weeks. Similarly, hoards of starving monkeys were also seen storming Lopburi in central Thailand after the tourists who usually feed them fled due to the outbreak of the COVID-19.