By Confidente Reporter
AT least seven people have been killed by crocodiles and hippopotamus in the Kavango East region since December to date, the Ministry of Environment and Tourism has said.
The ministry’s chief PRO Romeo Muyunda said cases of human and wildlife conflict were now too common.
Muyunda added that a majority of the attacks occur at night when people attempt to cross rivers using canoes or while they are swimming.
“Since January two people have died from crocodile attacks while four died from hippo attacks in this region (Kavango East). This is way too high compared to same time last year. Since December up to now seven people died this is unusual. People are crossing rivers at night using canoes and that should be discouraged as well as swimming in rivers.”
Muyunda also urged people to be more careful when using rivers as dangerous predators lurk in the waters.
“The recent incident happened on February 6 at Ndiyona village where a 25-year-old woman was attacked and killed by a crocodile in the morning when she went to the river to fetch water. She was caught and dragged into the river. Her body was later found with the left hand and leg missing.
“Our team is busy searching for the problematic animal. People must be vigilant especially when using rivers to fetch water. Dangerous predators might be in the rivers hence they should always make sure they are accompanied by someone,” he said.
According to publication About Travel, the hippo is responsible for more human fatalities in Africa than any other large animal. Male hippos actively defend their territories which run along the banks of rivers and lakes. Females have also been known to get extremely aggressive if they sense anyone coming in between their babies, who stay in the water while she feeds on the shore. Hippos can run at speeds of over 20 miles an hour and they have enormous jaws which host up to 20-inch canines.
The website also adds that crocodiles kill hundreds of people each year in Africa. The Nile crocodile can be found in almost every major river throughout the continent as well as in many lakes. Most fatalities occur while people are washing or collecting food near river banks and lake shores.
Fishermen are also prone to attacks as they slide their boats in and out of the water. Crocodiles attack by dragging their prey underwater and drowning them. Some crocodiles will also then roll their bodies repeatedly to weaken their prey.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015