A five-day search for two hyenas on the loose near Ulundi has been called off, Ezemvelo KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife said on Sunday.
“During our extensive five-day hunt for hyenas we did not see any hyena nor detect any new spoors which could have indicated the presence of hyenas. We now suspect that they might have moved away from the area,” biodiversity conservation director Bheki Khoza said in a statement.
“This has led to the conclusion that the hyenas seen during a lion call-up on Tuesday have moved from the area and, in all probabilities, gone back to Emakhosini Ophathe Heritage Park from where they were suspected to have escaped.”
He said Ezemvelo appealed to Ulundi residents to “relax and continue doing their daily chores like they did before the sighting of hyenas”.
“We further invite the community to immediately inform us in the event that they see fresh spoors or spot the actual hyenas.”
Rangers realised the animals were on the loose after a couple reported seeing a lion. Officials went to view the tracks and found they were not those of a lion, but of a hyena.
The two hyenas were sighted at 2am on Wednesday when a trap was set for the “lion”. - Sapa