THE hunt is on for a black panther spotted in Almeria.
Residents of the town of Berja are sleeping with one eye open after a member of the public notified police of the presence of what could be a ‘large black panther’ in the Castala natural park.
The town hall has decided to close the park area because of the possibility of a ‘large black cat’ roaming the area.
Although the first sighting of the animal was a few weeks ago, the resident did not notify the police until recently in case they thought he was ‘crazy’.
Agents have set up traps and night cameras in the area where the cat seems to patrol on a regular basis. They have retired from the area to leave it in peace in the hope of capturing it alive. So far a fox and an unfortunate domestic cat have been caught. Both were released unharmed.
The mayor, Antonio Torres, has himself seen the animal. He said: “I have seen it and I wouldn’t like to meet it face to face. We are probably talking about a panther that someone had as a pet and decided to let loose.”