MASVINGO – Runaway leopards whose origins are still to be confirmed, are terrorising the Mushawasha east farming community where they are attacking both people and their livestock.
Nyasha Mushonga of Farm No 332 told TellZim News in an interview that it is believed the runaway leopard population exceeded 50 in number.
He said the most affected areas were Makoho, Nyadzamba, Masarasara and the neighbouring communal lands of Maziofa.
"So far, a number of farmers have lost their livestock to the marauding leopards. These include cattle, goats, and sheep. Affected farmers include Tadiwa Madhume, Partson Dhuve and Charles Mandebvu of Farm No's 261, 300 and 301 respectively, he said.
Mushonga added that Seni Chidzingo, another farmer in the community, was recovering from wounds sustained after he was attacked by a leopard.
"Chidzingo set a trap after one of his cattle was killed by leopards. When he went to check on the trap he was attacked and had to be rescued by other farmers who were at a beer drink nearby.
"He nearly lost his hand and his palm was severely mauled. He is now recovering from the wounds at home," Mushonga said.
Another community member John Mudzanire said the menace of the leopards had been reported to parks officials who were still to attend to the scene.
No comment was immediately available from Zimbabwe National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (Zimparks).local