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Thu Jan 29 20:20:31 SAST 2015

Farm not allowed to recapture escaped crocodiles

Sapa | 08 February, 2013 08:28
Crocodiles in Limpopo.
Image by: MIKE HUTCHINGS/REUTERS

A Limpopo farmer from whose farm thousands of crocodiles escaped during recent flooding has been banned from recapturing them, Beeld reported on Friday.

Zane Langman, owner of the Rakwena crocodile farm in the Pontdrif area, told the paper on Thursday he was negotiating with the environmental affairs department about its decision.

"They told us we weren't allowed to capture crocodiles from the Limpopo River before we're given permission, because we can't prove ownership of the animals."

The crocodiles made world headlines when about 7000 of them escaped into the Limpopo River when it burst its banks.

Langman said he had recaptured about 3000 of the reptiles on his farm and in the surrounding areas during the past three weeks, but the rest were in the Limpopo river and its tributaries.

Environmental affairs department spokesman Wisani Shilenge could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, the National SPCA said in a statement the way in which the crocodiles were caught was inhumane.

The organisation's Nazareth Appalsamy said inspectors had observed the crocodiles being shocked with stun guns to make it easier to catch them.

Rakwena exports crocodile skins to Italy, and sells the meat locally.

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