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Jan 24 2013 11:01PM
 
‘Don’t capture escaped crocodiles’
FEARFUL: Following recent floods, the Rakwana Crocodile Farm has lost 15000 crocodiles. Picture: Gallo Images
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Peter Ramothwala

Fear stalks residents of Alldays, Limpopo, and neighbouring villages after 15000 crocodiles escaped from a farm after torrential rains caused flooding in Vhembe district. Some have turned up on a school rugby field, 120km away.

The crocodiles escaped from Rakwena farm, 15km away from the Pontdrift border with Botswana.

Farmer Johan Boshoff said he had 15000 crocodiles, mostly small ones, and they escaped on Sunday night.

He said the reptiles got over a 2m wall after floodwaters rushed through their enclosure.

He warned the public not to try to capture the animals.

“Call the police if you spot them,” said Boshoff. “A number have since been recaptured, but at least half remain on the loose, scattered far and wide, including at a school 120km away.”

The dangerous reptiles could end up in the Limpopo River.

Musina police spokesperson Lt Peter Mudau said a complaint was filed with the Alldays police yesterday morning.

“Police couldn’t get near as the area is still swampy after a week of rain. We can’t confirm the number of loose crocodiles because we haven’t seen a formal statement,” he said.

The defence force dismissed reports that it was helping recapture the crocodiles. Joint operations spokesperson Capt Zamo Sithole said they were aware of the incident. “We are not involved in the operation because recapturing crocodiles needs certain expertise.”

peterr@thenewage.co.za

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