The Namibian government announced on Thursday that it would be putting forty crocodiles up for sale and issuing more permits to kill the reptile following a rise in attacks on humans.
Environment Minister Pohamba Shifeta said that the decision was taken at a time when the country’s crocodile population has increased and is posing a security problem.
“We have focused on several areas where the crocodile population is exceeding the maximum capacity and is spreading to the riverbanks where they are starting to attack people,” the minister said.
In a statement on Wednesday, the ministry announced that 40 crocodiles would be captured in rivers in the north-eastern regions of Kavango and Zambezi, before being sold at auction.
The government said the reptiles would be sold to anyone who can prove they have suitable crocodile habitats, as well as proper export papers.
“We are also looking at the areas where attacks have taken place in the reserves, and we are going to increase the quotas” in terms of permits to kill, said Mr Shifeta, who added that they could be “doubled”.
The decision is based on a study of the crocodile population conducted after an increase in attacks on humans by the reptile, Shifeta said.
Since 2019, the ministry has paid out more than N$2.3 million (126 234 USD) in compensation to families affected by crocodile attacks, some of them fatal.
The sum includes compensation for attacks on humans as well as livestock.
Auctions for the sale of the crocodiles are due to start on 17 July, and similar sales will be repeated periodically in order to control the reptile population in the country.
Source : Africanews