Farmers at Mavindini village in Makueni County are counting losses after a herd of hippos invaded their farms Tuesday destroying crops of a yet to be determined value.
The hippos from the nearby Athi River wreaked havoc on the villagers’ farms destroying large tracts of maize, mango and green grams’ plantations.
Led by the area Member of the County Assembly, Martin Mutuku, the farmers called on the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) to put to an end to the human- wildlife conflict which has existed in the area for many years.
The MCA noted that the area was prone to wildlife invasion by elephants, hippos and monkeys which destroy farm crops leading to heavy losses.
These invasions by wildlife on our farms are very disheartening. We have lost farm crops worth millions of shillings for many years and it is high time the KWS puts an end to this menace, said Mutuku.
Stephen Sila, a farmer whose farm had been invaded by the animals decried the huge losses and urged the KWS to compensate the affected farmers.
Besides the destruction of crops, the animals also pose a danger to human lives, said Sila.
A KWS warden, Jeremiah Dipapa promised that KWS would take necessary action to restrict the animals away from human settlements.
He warned the residents against killing the animals and advised them to report all cases of animal invasions in their farms to the KWS personnel located in Wote for compensation.
By Roselyne Kavoo