Maputo, 29 May (AIM) – 1,500 households threatened by crocodiles and buffalos in Marromeu district, in the central Mozambican province of Sofala, have been forced to abandon their homes.
The animals come from the Marromeu Special Reserve, in the delta of the Zambezi river.
Taking into account the danger, according to Marromeu district administrator Henriqueta do Rosário, cited by the Beira daily “Diário de Moçambique”, the households will be transferred to safer places, since three persons are said to have died as a result of attacks by these animals.
“These people were attacked over the first quarter of the current year. The buffalos have been invading residential zones, forcing the population to look for other places, but they are also threatened by crocodiles”, Rosário said.
The administrator also said that the animals attack farming and “the conflict between man and wildlife is a growing reality. The locality of Malingapanse became a worrying zone threatened by buffalos and crocodiles.”
According to Rosário, at least 400 people have signed up to a voluntary resettlement initiative to leave the dangerous area.
“When the resettlement starts, it will be possible to decrease the conflict”, she said, adding however that people are responsible for invading the animals’ habitat.
The administrator said that the Marromeu Special Reserve inspectors have trained the local population in the use of fireworks to frighten the animals.