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Botswana: Lions unleash terror in Nkange
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http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?...4&dir=2017/august/17



Lions unleash terror in Nkange


FRANCISTOWN: Residents of Nkange in the Tutume Sub-District have abandoned their fields and are now living under self-imposed curfews, in fear of stray lions (numbering between five and 10), which have been wrecking havoc in the area.

By LESEDI MKHUTSHWA Thu 17 Aug 2017, 11:25 am (GMT +2)



Mmegi is informed that the Wildlife department has kick-started a clean-up operation, which includes veterinary, wildlife officers and a professional hunter from Charles Hill in Kgalagadi in order to capture the lions, which could number over 10.

Nkange village chief, Kgosi Toteng Nzonga said the lions descended on the area mid-July and began preying on domestic animals, triggering fear among local villagers. Since that time, he said, the five lions, which comprise a male lion, a lioness and three cubs, had already killed 25 cows, 17 goats and six donkeys.

The estimated value for the livestock killed, according to Nzonga, is P100,000, P10,200 for goats and P6,000 for donkeys. “Some people have abandoned their lands because they fear that the lions might attack them,” the chief said. “We are worried that these dreaded cats might attack school-going children during the day.

“Villagers are even scared to walk during the night. “The situation has made it difficult for people to perform their duties outside their homesteads, especially those who harvest thatching grass.

“People are going to die of hunger as some depend on this grass harvesting as well as activities such as crop and animal production to generate income.” He said prior to the lions’ arrival, the village had been terrorised by elephants which destroyed crops and left the majority of farmers empty-handed after the cropping season.

“The elephants destroyed our crops and now as if we have not suffered enough, we have lions killing our livestock,” he said. The village chief said reports had long been made at the Tutume Wildlife office, but no assistance had been forthcoming. He said on Monday, a senior Wildlife official had visited the village and promised to sort out the situation.

“These lions are causing havoc in the farmlands. It has been a month now since they started killing our livestock, but nothing has been done by the relevant authorities,” he said. Wildlife deputy director, Rexboy Mokandla confirmed the reign of terror caused by lions in Nkange, saying their data showed that six cattle and 17 goats had been killed thus far.

Although five lions are known to be in the area, Mokandla said more than 10 could possibly be operating in the area. “We suspect that the lions might have found refuge at an abandoned range land near the affected villages and we also suspect that we might find more than 10 lions in the area,” he said. “Lions target this season because after harvesting people leave their livestock to graze freely on their lands.”


Kathi

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http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?...5&dir=2017/august/22



Menacing lions still not captured

FRANCISTOWN: The lives of the people of Nkange and its surrounding villages are still at risk after veterinary officers and a professional hunter engaged to capture menacing lions came back empty-handed.


By LESEDI MKHUTSHWA Tue 22 Aug 2017, 17:05 pm (GMT +2)



The lions have killed livestock and are believed to number between five and 10.

The operation to capture the lions started last Thursday. The deputy director of Wildlife, Rexboy Mokandla told Mmegi that they failed to capture the lions even after they engaged teams, which included the veterinary officers, soldiers from Botswana Defence Force, officials from the Department of Wildlife together with a professional hunter from Charles Hill.

He said that their efforts to capture the lions did not bear any fruit since the beginning of their operation until on Sunday.

He added that on Sunday, they received a report that the lions allegedly killed a calf.

He said that they divided themselves into two teams and conducted an operation by tracking down the lion’s paws. He said that they managed to trace two lions after tracking down the paws in the wild through the help of trained dogs. Mokandla said that it became difficult to capture the lions because of the thick bushes surrounding the area. “The thick bushes where the lions were spotted made it difficult for us to shoot the lions. We were also hindered by poor network in order to effectively communicate during the operation to catch the lions,” he said.

Mokandla said on Sunday that their operation to catch the lions would continue on Monday (yesterday). He said that if they fail to capture the lions, they are going to employ other techniques like using a loud speaker to attract the lions. “We are going to hang a loud speaker on a tree and play a cassette of lions eating their prey. The unique sound produced will eventually attract the stray lions to the


place,” he said. He added that they would also have a cage nearby with meat to trap the lions.

Mokandla said that if the techniques do not work they would move to another stage of engaging a helicopter to assist in catching the lions. He encouraged villagers, especially grass harvesters and livestock caretakers, to stay away from the wild as they might get killed by lions. He said that so far the livestock figures reported at Tutume Wildlife office indicate that the lions killed 13 adult cattle, five calves, three donkeys, and 20 goats along with one dog. Nkange village and surrounding areas have been experiencing human-wildlife conflict over the past years during this season.

In a recent interview with Mmegi, Kgosi Toteng Nzonga of Nkange village had said that the lions have been terrorising the area since mid-July. He said that the five lions or more are preying on domestic animals in the area triggering fear amongst locals. He said that the lions, which comprise of a male, a female and three cubs, have already killed 25 cows, six donkeys and 17 goats in a period of a month.

He indicated that the estimated amount of cows killed is P100,000, for goats are P10,200, and P6,000 for donkeys giving a total estimated cost of P116,200, which is a huge loss to the villagers. Nzonga was worried that the dreaded felines might attack school children during the day.

He added that the villagers are now even scared to walk during the night. He said that the situation has made it difficult for people to perform their duties outside their homesteads, especially those who harvest grass.


Kathi

kathi@wildtravel.net
708-425-3552

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page."
 
Posts: 8245 | Location: Chicago | Registered: 23 July 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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the government should send someone out to take their picture Roll Eyes
 
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quote:
Originally posted by butchloc:
the government should send someone out to take their picture Roll Eyes


Might be some of Cecil's offspring out there. Smiler

Grizz


Indeed, no human being has yet lived under conditions which, considering the prevailing climates of the past, can be regarded as normal. John E Pfeiffer, The Emergence of Man

Those who can't skin, can hold a leg. Abraham Lincoln

Only one war at a time. Abe Again.
 
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