Lions found poisoned in Zimbabwe
19 March 2016, 10:03
Zimbabwe – Three lions have been found poisoned in southern Zimbabwe, it was reported on Friday.
The state-controlled Manica Post newspaper said the lions were believed to have been deliberately poisoned by villagers in the Chipinge area who were angry that the animals were preying on their cattle.
The attack highlights the human-wildlife conflict that exists in many parts of rural Zimbabwe.
The lions had allegedly strayed from the nearby Save Valley Conservancy, which is privately-run.
Reports said that the game fence that surrounded the conservancy had been vandalised in some areas.
The Manica Post carried a front-page picture of villagers gathered around two of the dead lions.
"Look, we are losing cattle each day. I have lost seven beasts since last year to the lions," a villager, who did not want to be named, told the newspaper.
"We have raised our concerns with the department of parks and wildlife, but they are not doing enough to contain the situation," he said. It's not clear what poison was used to kill the lions.
Poachers in Hwange in northern Zimbabwe used cyanide last year to kill about 60 elephants.
Lion-human conflict is a concern also in Hwange district. Conservationists in the area are experimenting with flashing LED lights fixed to homesteads, News24 reported last month.
In another apparent case of human-wildlife conflict that ended in the killing of an animal, the state ZBC broadcaster posted photos on its Twitter feed on Friday of what appeared to be a dead serval killed by a primary school teacher in Chirumhanzu district.
It was not immediately clear whether the cat had been attacked by someone.
ZBC said in a tweet: "Male teacher at New England [Primary School], Chirumhanzu fought and killed a wild animal using bare hands."