The hippo was shot on Thursday 30th December 2021 in Nyabugogo village, Rubumba cell of Kabare sector in Kayonza district.
The executive secretary of Kabare sector, Léon Karuranga has told IGIHE that there are still two more hippos that have been encroaching on residents’ crops for the past four years.
“The hippo dwelt in a dam between Rugunga and Nyabugogo often used by residents to water their crops. Initially, it was one hippo that encroached on residents’ crops. The district sought support from the military but efforts to kill it remained futile until the number increased to three,” he revealed.
Karuranga explained that the hippos have been destroying crops since 2017 where affected residents with gardens in the surroundings of the dam have been requesting for relocation of these hippos.
“Today, one of these hippos fell in apparent hole. As soon as residents alerted me, I approached soldiers who helped us to shot it. We were with park rangers and local leaders. The hippo’s carcass was taken to Akagera National Park to feed carnivores lest its flesh leaves residents in health risks,” he said.
It is said that farmers growing maize, beans, sweet potatoes and other food crops in the area have been claiming over animal encroachment since 2017.
Karurange said that local leaders will work with the park’s management to relocate the remaining species.