Beitbridge villagers lose livestock to hyenas
A PACK of hyenas has invaded some parts of Mpande area in Beitbridge District, Matabeleland South, killing livestock while villagers are now living in fear of attacks by the wild animals.
Recently, Mr Shadreck Moyo, from the area lost nine goats to a hyena which attacked the animals in a pen.
“A hyena came at night and ate nine goats which were in my pen.
“Many people have lost other animals such as donkeys and cattle. We have now resorted to setting fire at night to scare them away,” he said.
Villagers said they were now afraid that the wild animals might end up targeting people.
Chief Stauze of Beitbridge said the situation was being complicated by laws which do not allow community members to kill the animals.
“They can only report to the village head and other responsible authorities and cannot do anything to the animal even if they find it devouring their livestock,” he said.
Beitbridge Rural District Council Campfire officer Mr Peter Ncube said the problem was prevalent in the whole district but efforts were being made to deal with the problem.
“This problem is not only in Mpande, but throughout the district and recently there are some reports of cunning hyenas that are killing penned animals.
“The long term solution to deal with hyenas is training herd-dogs and this has been traditionally proven that there is no way a hyena can eat livestock when these herd dogs are there,” said Mr Ncube.
“If we receive such reports as Campfire, we inform a safari operator who uses a hyena collar to trap the hyenas.
“This collar produces sounds of a hyena which has a prey and thus making all the nearby hyenas come and get trapped or even killed depending on the reported case,” said Mr Ncube.
Last year, there were reports in Gwanda that hyenas were terrorising villagers by invading their homesteads and killing livestock.