Rare hyena found dead in Midlands

2012-08-14 00:00

AN extremely rare brown hyena has been found dead in a snare at Mount West in the Midlands.

Roz Marais of Free Me, a rehabilitation centre that works with indigenous wildlife, said brown hyenas were found mainly in Namibia and Caprivi, and there was a sighting just once every five or six years in the Midlands.

Marais, the centre manager for Free Me, said the big male hyena was found with the snare behind its ears and around its jaw, and it had suffocated to death.

She said it was important for people to report such finds because it helped with data collection for Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife.

The hyena was found by Scott Hartman, brother of singer Jason Hartman.

Speaking to The Witness yesterday, Scott described the find as “significant”. He said he had heard of a sighting at Mount West two years ago and had dismissed it as “rubbish”.

He had to eat his words when he found the brown hyena carcass on the side of the R103 about 300 metres from the N3 at Mount West this weekend.

“It had been struggling for a few days with the snare. Its eyes were bulging out. It looks like it was eventually hit by a car. It’s a hell of a tragedy.”

Scott, a conservationist with the Anti-poaching Association, said he would try to track where the hyena was living to see if there were others in the area.

Free Me can be reached at 033 330 3036.

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