Colombia has began sterilising hippos descended from animals illegally dropped at the nation by drug lord Pablo Escobar within the Nineteen Eighties.
The hippos unfold from Escobar’s property into close by rivers, the place they flourished.
There at the moment are greater than 100 of them, prompting the federal government’s plan to manage the inhabitants.
Two male hippos and one feminine have been surgically sterilised, environmental authorities stated.
The federal government plans to sterilise 40 hippos a 12 months, switch others to completely different nations, and will euthanise a number of the animals.
The hippos haven’t any pure predators in Colombia and have been declared an invasive species that might upset the ecosystem.
Sterilisation takes time, as a result of recognizing and capturing the territorial, aggressive 3-ton animals is sophisticated, David Echeverry Lopez, chief of the surroundings workplace accountable for the plan, stated.
The quantity of rain has made issues much more tough.
Extra grass means “they’ve an oversupply of meals, so baiting them to seize them turns into much more sophisticated,” he stated.
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A bunch of hippos was introduced within the Nineteen Eighties to Escobar’s personal zoo, Hacienda Napoles, which turned a vacationer attraction after his loss of life in 1993.
A lot of the animals stay freely in rivers and reproduce with out management. The federal government estimates there are 169 hippos in Colombia – and that if no measures are taken, there could possibly be 1,000 by 2035.
When the plan was first introduced, the surroundings ministry stated every sterilisation prices about $9,800, and entails dangers for the hippopotamus, together with allergic reactions to anesthesia or loss of life – together with risks for the animal well being personnel concerned.