If you’ve watched ‘Narcos’ on Netflix then you know that Pablo Escobar was so rich that he could literally afford to import exotic animals from around the world to Colombia for his own personal zoo.
While most of the animals were eventually captured and relocated, the hippos Escobar brought in are still in Colombia because they are too hard to capture and transport.
So what was originally just one male and three female hippos has grown into around 80 total and Colombia is getting really concerned. Keep in mind that the four hippos were brought to Colombia less than 40 years ago, so their population growth is actually pretty fast.
The fear is that the ‘cocaine hippos’ will continue to breed at this insane rate and become a threat to local wildlife and even people.
It has gotten so bad that some groups called for the hippos to be euthanized. Lucky for all the animal lovers, Colombia has found an alternative that just might work, giving their ‘cocaine hippos’ birth control via darts.
Yeah, you read that right. Naturally, surgical sterilization is pretty hard to do on hippos so the Colombian government is now using guns that fire darts containing contraceptive drugs to neuter the invasive species.
On Friday, the regional environmental agency Cornare announced that this method has led to 24 hippos being sterilized.
There is some concern that the hippos might require up to three doses for the treatment to be effective because of just how big they are but scientists are currently testing to see if that will be necessary.
Do you think this is the right move or should Colombia be a bit more forceful with these cocaine hippos?