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Unknown creatures that reportedly devour and suck blood from livestock are haunting villagers at Onheleiwa, Oidiva and Oikango of Ongwediva constituency.
Over 20 goats have been killed at Onheleiwa and Oidiva villages and an unknown number at Oikango, where the situation is said to be worse.
Villagers are convinced that the creatures have something to do with witchcraft. They are now accusing an elderly man who has a house at Onheleiwa village and his sister who has a house at Oikango village of being the owners of these strange, blood-sucking beasts.
Oshana Police spokesperson, Christina Fonsech, said the police were called at Onheleiwa last week where they followed the creatures’ footprints.
According to her, the creatures’ footprints are bigger than a dog’s footprints, and police could not identify the creatures.
“We followed them but they walked until a spot where they just vanished. It’s difficult to explain what happened to those footprints because they looked as if they climbed onto something but it was in an open space, so we don’t know what happened,” she said.
Olivia Shikongo had her whole kraal wiped out by the creatures, leaving her with only two kid goats.
According to Shikongo, on July 3 five of her goats were eaten up. All that was left were traces of hooves and heads of some of the goats, while other goats had their stomachs cut open and had no intestines or liver.
“Last Wednesday they came to the kraal again. When I heard the goats making noise, I started to scream. It seems that they could no longer kill the goat that they had bitten so they left. When we went to the kraal in the morning, there were only three goats. One goat, which is the bigger one, was fighting for its life. There was no trace of five other goats that were also at the kraal the previous night,” she explain
According to her, when she and other villagers looked around all they could find were the footprints of the unknown creatures while her five goats seemed to have disappeared into thin air....
African Wild Cat
The Crowned Eagle or Crowned Hawk-eagle (Stephanoaetus coronatus), is a very large, powerful, crested bird of prey (80–90 cm [2.6-3 ft] long, approximately) found in tropical Africa south of the Sahara; in Southern Africa it is a common resident in suitable habitat in the eastern areas. It is the only extant member of the genus Stephanoaetus. A second species, the Malagasy Crowned Eagle (Stephanoaetus mahery) became extinct after humans settled on Madagascar (Goodman, 1994).
The Crowned Eagle is Africa's most powerful and ferocious eagle in terms of the weight and nature of prey taken. It preys on mammals, especially duikers, weighing up to 34 kg (75 lbs). Due to their similarities, the Crowned Eagle is often considered Africa's analogue of the Harpy Eagle.
I found a dead sheep [calf, goat]; how do I identify the killer?
Predators have distinctive styles. It is worth examining the carcass, both to decide on future protective measures, and because you may in some instances be eligible for compensation. For ranchers suffering large-scale predation, there are systematic predation evaluation procedures.
Coyote will often drag a carcass to a quiet area, and follow a distinctive eating pattern. They make an almost surgical opening in the thorax, consuming the heart, lungs, liver, and internal organs, except the stomach. They sometimes return later to pick at bones or haunches.
Wolves are usually organized pack hunters, and may leave many dead.
Dogs typically will attack many victims in a flock. The characteristic bite marks are on the flanks, rear legs, backs, or rear ends of the animals. Sometimes a pack of dogs will concentrate on the head of a victim like a pony or llama. The victims often carry multiple wounds, and frequently no portion of the animal is eaten.
A bear leaves distinctive tracks and scat, and will generally maul the entire carcass, peeling back the skin, and eating the meat.
Bobcat & Cougar
Bobcat kills have claw marks on the carcass and subcutaneous hemorrhaging.
Feral cats take lambs as they are being born, sometimes damaging the ewe at the same time. They have been reported as a considerable problem in Australian flocks.
Eagle talons leave distinctive puncture marks. Unlike a bear kill, the skeleton is intact; the head and neck remain attached.
Coyotes will sometimes decapitate a fawn, carry the head a considerable distance, and feed on it in isolation (O’Gara 1978). Coyotes often will discard long bones and hooves because they have little edible material on them (White 1973). In fact, we found one fawn in Quehanna had been killed and cached without its head and three of its four lower legs (below the knee). We initially attributed this predation event to bears because of the condition of the carcass. We reasoned that only bears would be capable of so cleanly severing the head. However, it seemed unlikely that a bear would kill a fawn and eat so little of it; the predator had eaten none of the viscera or meat. The published information on the decapitation and leg severing by coyotes helped us correctly identify the predator of this fawn as a coyote, not a bear.