A rare Himalayan mole was rescued from a village in Sreemangal upazila yesterday.
However, the mole was injured while being captured by locals and now receiving treatment at Bangladesh Wildlife Service Foundation in the upazila.
Sopon Deb Sajal, director of the foundation, told this correspondent that locals of Phulcherra village in the upazila spotted a hole in the earthen wall of one Thomas Nasak's house. As they tried to dig into the hole, the animal came out and scuttled across the yard.
Probably it was afraid seeing a large gathering, he said, adding that the mole got injured while being captured.
The director said the mole weighed 100 grammes and was 4-4.5 inches in length. It has cylindrical body with a short neck. The mole is black and completely covered by velvety fur.
It is found in the central and eastern Himalayas usually between an elevation of 1500 metres and 2400 metres. It mostly eats earthworms and insects and their larvae, Sopon said.
The animal would be released to Lawachhara forest in Moulvibazar after treatment, he said.
Tabibur Rahman, assistant conservator of wildlife management and nature conservation department in Moulvibazar, also confirmed that the mole was rescued from Phulcherra village.
Tania Khan, founding president of Save Our Unprotected Life (SOUL), said the animal was Himalayan mole.
Sharif Jamil, joint secretary of Bangladesh Paribesh Andolon (Bapa), said wildlife in locality indicated serous degradation of their habitat.
Forests in Bangladesh have decreased significantly in recent years which are evident from such incidents. There are many cases in which wildlife has been found in the villages near forest, he noted.
Sharif said mole is classified as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List and their population is declining.
According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the English name of mole is Himalayan mole or Eastern mole. Its scientific name is Euroscaptor micrura.
This species -- found in Nepal, Bhutan, India and Bangladesh -- is very secretive, nocturnal and fossorial. It is purely a forest floor dwelling mammal, it says.