Initially there were only four animals, today the government counts around 80 to 120 across the region
Almost 30 years after the death of the greatest drug dealer in the Americas, Pablo Escobar back to the subject because of hippos that he created in a private zoo. The group of animals has multiplied and now they take care of the swamps of Colombia. Scientists warn that mammals are spreading through one of the country’s main waterways, the Magdalena River. Its waste is changing the chemistry and oxygen levels of the water and leading to the flowering of algae harmful to people and animals. In addition, hippos have been a direct threat to the safety of Colombians, as they are ferocious animals. Because they have no natural predators in the South America, they reproduce much more easily than in Africa.
According to a study published in the journal Biological Conservation, the slaughter of animals would be the only way to reduce the environmental impact. If nothing is done, the situation can get out of control in just 10 or 20 years. About 30 animals would need to be slaughtered or spayed each year. The rise of so-called “cocaine hippos” began in 1993, after authorities killed Pablo Escobar and confiscated his property in Hacienda Napoles. Initially there were only four animals, today the government counts around 80 to 120 across the region.
* With information from reporter Livia Fernanda