By Emmanuel Kasagga
Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre Entebbe and Uganda Wildlife Authority have started an operation to capture crocodiles sighted at Kitinda shores on Lake Victoria in Katabi town council.
This was after local fishermen Sulaiman Sekkajja and Joab Mwesigwa notified UWEC that the crocodiles have invaded their fishing spot.
“At first I thought it was a Monitor Lizard but after a few days of proper observation we confirmed it was a crocodile that is seen busking at our fishing spot fish narrates” Sekajja.
UWEC public relations officer Eric Ntalo confirms this and adds that, “Earlier last week, it was brought to our attention that Kitinda shores on Lake Victoria, Entebbe were invaded by crocodiles.
Local fishermen Sulaiman Sekkajja and John Mwesigwa alleged that an unknown number of crocs were sighted at their fishing spot. We immediately swung into action, and assessed the situation. We later sensitized a few fishermen, local beach management on the precautionary measures against the reptiles.”
Ntalo says that from then on, “Our outreach team composed of education officers and animal keepers like Phillip Katabulawo returned the following day, and established from old residents that the area is originally a habitat for crocodiles, but due to increasing human activities such as sand mining, the animals were forced to move away.”
“Our presumption is that if it is true that they have returned which is their relief, it is as result of concerted efforts of the environmental police and Entebbe leadership to control human activities that are in disharmony with the environment.”
After initial assessment, “We contacted UWA, a partner in conservation and requested residents to put us on the alert in case they become problem animals. Special thanks to the local residents of Entebbe and the local leadership for calling us when there is need for intervention in wildlife matters, and we urge them to be cautious of their lives always. One of our mandates is to rescue endangered animals, rehabilitate them and release them back to the wild. We shall update you as we continue to monitor the situation.”
Kitinda is well known as a habitat for crocodiles which had only fled because of the lake sand mining that had started in that area and later stopped by the authorities.