Man-eating hyenas continue to terrorise Kasungu

A community in Kasungu continue living in fear two weeks after a two-year-old baby was mauled by marauding hyenas as the beasts are back, attacking livestock.


Hyenas spread fear in Kasungu

Village headman Mseu of chief Njombwa’s area said his subjects cannot work on the gardens or development work in fear of the marauding hyenas.

“The hyenas come and attack our livestock, they attack even dogs. Some of our livestock have been killed. This is of great concern to us,this is why we are asking the authorities to send game rangers,” he said.

A villager, Biliati Banda said he escaped a hyena attack in his farming field a few days ago.

Director of Parks and Wildlife Brighton Kunchedwa said his office will send the game rangers in the area to hunt the beasts.

“We were waiting for a report. Once we get it, our game rangers will be on the ground,” he said.

The two-year-old child was attacked when her parents were cultivating in a farming field.

It is very rare for hyenas to attack people; goats and chickens are their normal prey.

Hyenas are doglike animals which hunt at night in packs and often act as scavengers.

Superstition

But local people have their own ideas of what might lie behind the attacks.

Some superstitious villagers believe the man-eating hyenas were kept and fed by humans, who used to send them out on clandestine magical missions.

After their keeper’s death, the hyenas became hungry, and because they were reared by humans began attacking people, rather than animals.

Other traditional beliefs in Malawi hold that people can use witchcraft to change themselves into hyenas to terrorise and kill their enemies.

The government has dismissed these stories.

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